Thursday, February 28, 2008

I'm pretty pleased with my new camera, a Kodak EasyShare Z something-or-other. It has 8+ mega pixels, and a 12X zoom, so I can zero in on stuff miles away and get a clear shot. I'm just waiting on my big 4 Gig card and rechargeable batteries to come and I can snap up a storm.

It even takes video with sound, which is fabulous. I'm really going to have some fun.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Bully For Them

I'm feeling somewhat traumatised today after a call from my daughter last night telling me her 9 y.o. son was being set upon by bullies at his new school.

He has been jeered at, hit and kicked by an unsavoury group of lads, and his mum is thinking of pulling him out of that 'dear little country school' and moving him to another larger one nearby where her friend has children. After only five weeks at school, that will entail quite a lot of expense. It just shouldn't be necessary.

Discussions with the teachers don't seem to be resolving the problem or giving her much support, which sounds a bit illegal to me in this enlightened age. Children are supposed to feel safe at school.

I've turned on my lateral thinking skills, and have made some enquiries re: Martial Arts lessons in the hope he may build some confidence, and make some new friends.

My man rides a big noisy Harley and has promised to roar down to pick him up after school next week, just in time for all the nasty little twerps to see him. That might give him some increase in status. I've told him he's not allowed to smile; just curl his lip into a sneer!

Our motorcycle mechanic and friend is a Coffin Cheater, who I'm sure would ride down with his back patch showing if one big bad biker is not enough.

We're having him stay over tomorrow night and I'm going to school him in holding his head high and not cry and let them win.

"Some people are like Slinkies... not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you see one tumble down the stairs."
... Author Unknown

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


Giant python eats family dog

Aren't some people really dumb?

A CAIRNS couple fear for their children after a 5m python devoured their dog in front of them - weeks after other snakes ate their cat and guinea pig.

Daniel Peric, of Kuranda, near Cairns, said he would not leave his two children, aged five and seven, alone in any part of the house after the "enormous" python ate his silky terrier-cross chihuahua on Monday night, the Cairns Post reported today.

"Actually watching it unfold before your eyes was pretty gut-wrenching," he said.

The couple's cat and guinea pig have also been killed by snakes in recent weeks.

"When it happens once, you think it's a one-off, but last night I thought "this is serious," he said.

"We have ducted air-conditioning. Call it paranoia, but my big fear is that a snake will get in there."

Click here for full exposure of incredible idiots............

Kransky Sisters

We went to see the Kransky Sisters last night at the nearby West Gippsland Art Centre, and had a great night's entertainment.

We'd seen them on Paul McDermott's 'Side Show' and on the ABC's 'Spics and Specs', and really loved them.

They're a very quirky group of gals, and talented singers and musicians to boot. We've even got a signed tea towel!

You Know You're Australian If......

1. You know the meaning of the word "girt"

2. You believe that stubbies can be either drunk or worn

3. You think it's normal to have a leader called Kevin.

4. You waddle when you walk due to the 53 expired petrol discount vouchers stuffed in
your wallet or purse.

5. You've made a bong out of your garden hose rather than use it for something illegal such as watering the garden

6. You believe it is appropriate to put a rubber in your son's pencil case when he first attends school

7. When you hear that an American 'roots for his team' you wonder how often and with whom?

8. You understand the phrase "a group of women wearing black thongs' refers to footwear and may be less alluring than it sounds.

10. You pronounce Penrith as "Pen-riff"

11. You believe the 'l' in the word "Australian" is optional

12. You can translate "Dazza and Shazza played Acca Dacca on the way to Maccas"

13. You believe it makes perfect sense for a nation to decorate its highways with large fibreglass bananas, prawns and sheep

14. You call your best friend "a total bastard" but someone you really, truly despise is just "a bit of a bastard"

15. You think "Woolloomoloo" is a perfectly reasonable name for a place

16. You're secretly proud of our killer wildlife

17. You believe it makes sense for a country to have a $1 coin that is twice as big as a $2 coin.

18. You understand that "Wagga Wagga" can be abbreviated to "Wagga" but that "Woy Woy" cannot be called 'Woy'

19. You believe that cooked-down axle grease makes a good breakfast spread.

20. You believe all famous Kiwis are actually Australian, until they stuff up, at which point they again become Kiwis.

21. Hamburger. Beetroot. Of course.

22. You know that certain words must, by law, be shouted out during any rendition of the Angel's song "Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again"

23. You believe, as an article of faith, that the confectionery known as the 'Wagon Wheel' has become smaller with every passing year.

24. You still don't get why the "Labor" in "Australian Labor Party" is not spelled with a 'u'.

25. You wear ugh boots outside the house.

26. You believe that the more you shorten someone's name, the more you like them.

28. Whatever your linguistic skills, you find yourself able to order takeaway fluently in every Asian language.

29. You understand that "excuse me" can sound rude, while a "scuse me" is always polite.

30. You know what it's like to swallow a fly, on occasion via your nose.
31. You understand that 'you' has a plural and its "youse"

32. You know its not summer until the steering wheel is too hot to handle.

33. Your biggest family’ argument over the summer concerned the rules for Beach Cricket.

34. You shake your head in horror when companies try to market what they call ANZAC cookies.

35. You still think of Kylie as "that girl off Neighbours"

36. When returning home from overseas you expect to be brutally strip-searched by Customs - just in case you're trying to sneak in fruit.

37. You believe the phrase "smart casual" refers to a pair of black tracky-daks, suitably laundered.

38. You understand that all train timetables are works of fiction.

39. When working on a bar, you understand male customers will feel the need to offer an excuse whenever they order low-alcohol beer.

40. You get choked up with emotion by the first verse of the national anthem and then have trouble remembering the second.

41. You find yourself ignorant of nearly all the facts deemed essential in the government’s new test for migrants.

42. You know, whatever the tourist books say, that no one says 'cobber'

43. You know that only other Australians, here and overseas, will understand this list.

"The proper means of increasing the love we bear our native country is to reside some time in a foreign one."

... William Shenstone

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Toasty Warm in Winter

We're about past the oppressive hot days of summer, so the next job is to worry about fueling our heater over the coming cool evenings. Trying to be environmentally responsible, we use the air conditioner only when the heat is overwhelming, and leave lighting the fire until the cold really starts to bite.

Over winter, we use about six trailer loads of timber, and each year about this time we start to get serious about hunting some up. Yesterday was spent working along the sides of a nearby road, where the council and road maintenance contractors clear-felled a large group of blackwoods and wattles.

A while back, while traveling on this particular road down to town, there was a pile of car glass spread across a corner, with the left overs of a large tree at the edge. Obviously a car had come to grief with a falling tree. Weeks later, we heard that indeed a tree had fallen across the rear end of a car innocently passing by. The car was a write-off, but fortunately, the woman driver was unhurt.

This caused a major kerfuffle, with a write-up in the local paper about the council not clearing dangerous trees from road edges, and the risks to drivers. We get some mighty winds around here, and this group of trees regularly tip one over the road. Government now holds the opinion that all trees, dead and living, have value as habitat for wildlife, so they're very reluctant to chop anything down.

Probably frightened by possible litigation if nothing was done, our council solved the problem by 'nuking' the whole area. Stopping to chat with a neighbouring farmer, we learned that it was all going to be carted into his paddock and burned in the near future.

So, we got dressed up in our heavy duty working clobber, the man sharpened his chainsaw, connected the trailer up and off we went to the site of all this destruction.

As we pulled up at the nearest and most appealing tree, the farmer came on his tractor talking about how he had wanted that one, and "Boy, you have to be quick!". Not wanting to upset him, we offered to go to another, but he was just being a bit of a smarty pants. There were close to one hundred trees down so there was plenty for all.

Others came and went, loading up their utes and trailers; some we knew and some not. That same farmer got quite grumpy when a tree he had started on and left to deliver timber home attracted somebody else. There were some fiery swear words ringing among the tree tops for a time.

My man has been in the area for almost forty years, so we had regular stoppers from passing people wanting to chew the fat for a while. We even got a bag of cucumbers and peppers from a local's garden.

By the time we had four trailer loads chopped, split roughly and delivered home, we decided we had worked for long enough, and collapsed at home with a champagne for me and a beer for him.

Today has been pretty low key, while we wait for tired muscles to calm down, but we will be warm now!


I did make some gorgeous mango chutney today in the microwave, which is just delicious.......

Mango Chutney
Makes 4 cups


4 large (about 550g each) ripe mangoes, peeled, flesh chopped
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, sliced
6 green shallots, chopped
400g (2 cups, firmly packed) soft brown sugar
100mls (5 tbs) malt vinegar
1 tsp ground ginger
2 small fresh red chillies, or to taste, de-seeded, finely chopped
1/4 tsp salt

Combine mangoes and apples in a 3 litre (12 cup) capacity microwave-safe bowl. Cover with a lid or a double layer of plastic wrap and microwave for 6 minutes on High/850watts/100% or until apples are slightly softened.

Remove the cover and stir in the green shallots, soft brown sugar, malt vinegar, ginger, red chillies and salt. Microwave, uncovered for 20-30 minutes on High/850watts/100%, stirring every 5 minutes, or until mixture is thick and only a small amount of liquid is left.

Spoon into hot sterilized jars, seal while hot. Invert jars for 2 minutes then stand upright until cold. Store in a cool dry cupboard for up to 2 months. Keep in the fridge after opening.

Uses: Serve the chutney with ham and roast turkey, spread on sandwiches and to accompany Indian curries.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Butterfly wings

A glorious butterfly I snapped the other day feeding on our hebe flowers.
Opened, it was dusty blue shading to white, but the underneath was spectacular.

Googling it, I discovered it was an 'Imperial Jezebel'. What a wonderful name!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Ebay or Bust!

Pen and wash on watercolour paper
Framed ~ $295

I love eBay, and use it for most of my gadget purchases. It's fun to get in there, find the right item, research it's regular retail price elsewhere, then get back in and make a killing.

I might not use it for many months, as I'm not one of those addicted buyers who blow huge amounts on stuff they don't need. Lately, it's been a bit problematic, but I am getting through all the glitches.

It was my daughter's birthday recently, so another daughter and I decided to buy her a food processor. My man and I have 6 children between us, and have agreed we would spend up to a certain amount for birthdays and Christmas, and my daughter and her fiance are on a house-buying budget.

So, we got into eBay, found a new processor that did all the things she might want, bought it and presented it last Sunday. There was much delight and cooings about making daiquiris, so we were quite pleased.

Tuesday night, I get a call from the birthday girl, saying no matter what they did to it, it just would not work! Damn..................

Today I have driven down to pick up the repacked item, ready for a post off. I have agreed to a replacement, because she still has those daiquiris to make, so let's hope there will be a satisfactory result at the end.

Next ~ I bought a snappy new camera via eBay, supposedly from the US. After paying for it, I got a delighted welcoming email from Hong Kong. Hong Kong! How did it get over there?

Over three weeks have passed and I was getting withdrawal symptoms from having no digital, so emailed on Monday asking politely 'where it might be on the delivery trail?

The next day, I received an equally polite email from Hong Kong, saying they would check the status of said camera's delivery. This morning I get a hugely apologetic notice saying it hadn't been posted; something about the destination hadn't been verified in Paypal (rubbish!). It was now on it's way.

I'm hangin' out for that one! (still love eBay!)

"Life is the Greatest bargain ~ we get it for nothing"
... Yiddish proverb

Monday, February 18, 2008

too much...............

Discussions underway with TAC (accident commission) Re: surgery. Now it's March the 3rd for a definitive answer on whether they will cover both plate removal in my wrist and an exploratory on my knee injury. It's going on and on....

Lots of autumnal activities are hinging on this getting over and done with quickly, but it is a lesson in patience.

A trip to my GP to get more letters for TAC brought up the fact that I have two small Basal Cell Carcinomas on my face that need dealing with. Now I have an appointment with a dermatologist on 17th March to have that seen to, which will probably be on crutches!

Apart from getting toasty brown in my teens, I developed a serious dislike for all that hot UV on my face and body, and have been reluctant to expose myself much ever since. I figure now I could be made to suffer quite successfully by tying me down outside on a hot day: bit like Chinese water torture!

Obviously I haven't covered up enough. All those years in the sun have made their mark, but I am lucky to only have the least threatening of the skin cancers. I came home and told my man he was off to the doc's for a check too, as he has one just like mine that will need doing too.

It is now time for a 'tidy-up'! I have made an appointment to see the dentist as well for next week: the first time in about eight years. The receptionist said cheerily, "We'll set aside about an hour to go over your teeth and see what needs doing". That's the sound of dollar signs lining up!


Apart from that, I found a beautiful long brown stick insect doing a lazy breast stroke in the dog's water this morning. About six inches long and missing one leg, he was pleased to be lifted out and released from his slow desperate circles. I still don't have my new camera yet (it's very late in the post!), so couldn't snap his picture, but I did save a life today.


It's a stinker of a hot day, but a cool change is expected tonight. We are soooo dry, and desperate for good rain. The poodles are freshly bathed and dry in a jiffy, so we're all out to the air conditioned comfort of the studio to work on my big painting.

"When you're drowning, you don't say 'I would be incredibly pleased if someone would have the foresight to notice me drowning and come and help me,' you just scream! "
... John Lennon

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Up and Running Again

It's been a real pain re-installing programs after my laptop crashed and needed re-formatting. It's a scary time and never goes back the way you're used to, ..... though sometimes that's a good thing.

I was investigating setting up a 'ghost drive' before it went down, so once I had put everything back together again, I went back to Google and learned as much as I could. My daughter's partner said he would set one up for me, but he's a busy man, and I love learning more.

I discovered that Norton makes a Ghost Drive program, so bought that last week and have used it. It's very simple, and also has a backup of your files option as well. It can do a one off so when your computer is pristine and working really well, you can store that away on another drive and then paste it across if your old one gets into strife. Voila! It's all up and running as before!


I am pleased to have been accepted by our local council into Art melbourne08
, which will make me get back into a semblance of work again. Because of my accident and pending surgery, I have slowed to a near halt my plans for an exhibition, but do have some OK paintings up and running.

Baw Baw Shire enters this huge show as a 'gallery', and chooses it's stable of artists for that year. I have around two very tall metres for display, so hopefully I will be able to put four large canvases and maybe fit in a few small complimentary watercolours. My Coal Creek Oils should be well suited for a more contemporary audience.

I actually got out into the studio for a painting session last Tuesday and wondered why I had left it so long!


"The Weekend Australian Art Melbourne 08 will take place at the Royal Exhibition Building, Carlton from Friday 18 - Sunday 20 April 2008.

First Night, the exclusive Preview to the fair will take place on Thursday 17th April.

Bringing together Melbourne's vibrant art scene, The Weekend Australian Art Melbourne offers collectors and newcomers to the art market the opportunity to view and choose from an enormous variety of art styles, mediums and content.

Featuring over 100 leading Australian galleries presenting new artwork from 800 established and emerging artists, the fair will include paintings, sculpture, ceramics, photography, indigenous works, art objects and works on paper including limited edition prints, from the affordable to the collectable."

"Chase down your passion like it's the last bus of the night."
... Glade Byron Addams

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word.......

"Today we honour the indigenous peoples of this land, the oldest continuing cultures in human history.

We reflect on their past mistreatment.

We reflect in particular on the mistreatment of those who were Stolen Generations - this blemished chapter in our nation's history.

The time has now come for the nation to turn a new page in Australia's history by righting the wrongs of the past and so moving forward with confidence to the future.

We apologise for the laws and policies of successive Parliaments and governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow Australians.

We apologise especially for the removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families, their communities and their country.

For the pain, suffering and hurt of these Stolen Generations, their descendants and for their families left behind, we say sorry.

To the mothers and the fathers, the brothers and the sisters, for the breaking up of families and communities, we say sorry.

And for the indignity and degradation thus inflicted on a proud people and a proud culture, we say sorry.

We, the Parliament of Australia, respectfully request that this apology be received in the spirit in which it is offered, as part of the healing of the nation.

For the future we take heart; resolving that this new page in the history of our great continent can now be written.

We today take this first step by acknowledging the past and laying claim to a future that embraces all Australians.

A future where this Parliament resolves that the injustices of the past must never, never happen again.

A future where we harness the determination of all Australians, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, to close the gap that lies between us in life expectancy, educational achievement and economic opportunity.

A future where we embrace the possibility of new solutions to enduring problems where old approaches have failed.

A future based on mutual respect, mutual resolve and mutual responsibility.

A future where all Australians, whatever their origins, are truly equal partners, with equal opportunities and with an equal stake in shaping the next chapter in the history of this great country, Australia."

"True remorse is never just a regret over consequence; it is a regret over motive."
... Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1960

Monday, February 11, 2008

More about Bee Stings

'Gustave Nude'
This was an experimental painting done after the style of Klimt, whose work I really love. There is quite a lot of gold leaf on it; the first time I have used that. It is somewhat flawed (aren't they all?), but I still like it.
Oil on canvas, and framed.
AU$750 + p.h


When I wrote about being stung by my bees last week, I had a comment from someone who said she had severe pain with her arthritis and nothing worked. After a busy time out over the weekend, I actually remarked to my man that I had little or no arthritic pain in my knee, which has given me a terrible time lately. I did receive a sting just below the joint which had quite a strong reaction. Maybe wishful thinking, but I really hadn't thought about it before it occurred to me on Sunday.

Bee stings provide a lot of anti-inflammatory agents, but would wear off pretty quickly, I would imagine.

More stings? Hard work. I might cut a hole over my knee in my bee suit and point it at the hive every now and again.


No sound from my little swallow this morning. They die quickly with no food and lots of stress, but it hasn't dropped into the fire box yet. I will listen for it some more. We're going to put chicken wire over the top of the chimney so it doesn't happen again.


It was my grandson's birthday yesterday, and I made a big chocolate sponge birthday cake for us to take down to him last night. Wondering what to give to him for his birthday, I remembered how a couple of weeks ago we went through the Bent Objects Blog laughing at the wonderful creatures this clever man makes out of pieces of wire, assorted vegetables and households bits and pieces.

Perfect! I went to The Warehouse and bought some wire cutters, narrow nosed pliers, a roll of fine wire and a plastic snap top container to put it all in.

He was delighted, and after lighting the candles and cutting the cake, he got one of his mum's carrots and made his first creature.

"Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day."
... Pooh's Little Instruction Book, inspired by A.A. Milne

Sunday, February 10, 2008

A Life's Struggle

I am sitting here near my wood heater's flue listening to a tiny swallow which has fallen down the flue. I can't reach him because our flue is over 20 feet long and takes a few turns as it winds up the long ceiling to the roof top.

This happens occasionally, usually to swallows, and sometimes resolve with a live exit and sometimes not. When I hear one drop into the fire box, I can open the door and catch it, or let it fly crazily around the open space until it finds it's way out the opened door upstairs.

Covering the top is the answer, but our roof is very tall and steep and I worry about my man taking a tumble of his own.

It sounds quite desperate, poor little thing, calling all the time, and loosened soot is clattering down the flue as it struggles to maintain its hold. One more turn in the flue and it's down.

I wish it luck........

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Rain has finally come!

Not much, but the tanks are half full, and we can stop worrying every time we turn the taps on.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Trauma with a Capital T

Sunset Rose
~ Oil on canvas ~

It's been a difficult two days. My pooter spat the dummy yesterday morning, and I messed it up a bit more before pulling out my recovery discs and re-formatting the whole thing. Sadly, my backup was from 11/2007 and I have lost lots of interesting bit and pieces, but I figure my life was pretty good then, so I will survive. My heart nearly stopped when I thought I had dropped my Christmas baby photos, but I had copied them onto the D drive within the laptop only days ago, and they were still there! I thought the re-format would have wiped that too.

Great relief..................

At times like this you realise it really pays to back up. I am not sure how to operate the retrieval process, but did manage to pull out my internet favorites successfully today. The rest might come with some assistance. I got an 320G external hard drive last November, so my extra backups were safely out of the laptop.

My daughter's partner is a computer whiz, and has promised to assist to build a ghost drive that can sit there in storage for pasting across should this happen again. No re-installing needed.

It's amazing how much a life can revolve around your computer. I spend most days alone (and like it that way), as we live well out of town, and having all this wonderful information at my fingertips keeps me well in touch with the world.

But it's very stressful having an empty computer. Programs need re-installing, I've lost the serial key for my Microsoft Office, which really pips me off. I have got my pen tablet working again, so that's a big plus. I can't remember all the little programs I had downloaded off the web, but that will drift back in.

Clean, fast operating computer........ lovely!

"If you're in a bad situation, don't worry it'll change. If you're in a good situation, don't worry it'll change."
... John A. Simone, Sr.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Another Kind of Sting.

I'm beginning to really enjoy these..........

"The National Lottery

P O Box 1010
Liverpool, L70 1NL
(Customer Services)

REF: KPC/9080118308/02/TCA
BATCH No: 12/25/0034
TICKET No:20511465463-7644
SERIAL No:S/N-00168
LUCKY No:07 . 08 . 27 . 37 . 40 . 46 . [01] Bonus Ball


We are pleased to inform you of the result of the winners of the UK NATIONAL LOTTERY ONLINE PROMO PROGRAMME, held on 5th February 2008.The process was carried out through a random selection from a database of over 250,000 email addresses drawn across the world.
You have therefore been approved for a lump sum pay out of £3,000,000 (Three Million Pounds Sterling) in cash credited to file UKNL-L/200-26937.To file for your claim, please
contact our claims agent;

Mr.Kurt Hamilton or
Fax Number:+44-8704713858

Provide him with the information below:
1.Full Name:
2.Full Address:
3.Marital Status:
8.Country Of Residence:
9.Telephone Number:

(A)ON-LINE WIRE TRANSFER to your designated Bank Account.

To file for your claim, kindly contact your claims agent with the below details for processing of your claims and send the required information to him.

Mr.Kurt Hamilton or"

"With lies you may get ahead in the world - but you can never go back. "
... Russian proverb

Bee Sting Therapy for Arthritis

Newbie Beekeeper

I've been out upsetting my little ladies this morning, though I think I was as upset as them. Our second hive with her new queen is now up and running, so I needed to put them into a bigger box.

The remaining hive, which had a large group of workers poached to make up the new one, was absolutely boiling with bees, so needed another box on top to give them room to expand. They will swarm if they are too crowded.

Our six secondhand hives have been sitting out behind the shed near the dog runs, and had a lot of activity around them; so much so I wondered whether there had been a swarm into them. They got quite grumpy if we got close, so they had to be moved before the poodles copped it.

I smoked the two in question, then put a sheet over them and trolleyed them down to our small 'forest' with the two original active hives. I had quite a sweat up with all this difficult moving around, as we are working on slopes here all the time. One box got away from me and crashed to the ground, which was a bit worrying.

Tops off, I discovered there was nothing important happening inside. Perhaps they were hunting for honey and stealing beeswax, but they might like to move in there later if they swarm.

Bees don't like sweaty humans, but I had all the clobber on, so rather than coming back again later, I kept going. I did pay the price. They were furious with me and although I puffed smoke all over, they hammered at my gear so hard I had to beat a hasty retreat to clean bees out of the creases and regroup.

But I couldn't chicken out, with the box top off and bees crawling everywhere, so back into the cauldron I went, cleaning some errant comb from the tops of the frames, then installing a new box complete with frames on the top. I was a bit too strung out to pull all the frames up to look for swarm cells. Next week, when they (and me) are a bit calmer.....

One done!

The next one was only a small box with four frames. I set up the new box next to it with four extra empty frames, opened the other and moved them across. My new bee queen sporting her white dot on her back was amongst her lady attendants. This was a lot easier, though I missed out that the opening was on the other side, needing hasty apologies to them all and a quick switch around. Bees do best when their hives stay in the same place, with the opening matching to how it was before.

As I calmed down a bit, so did they, but I made sure this time that all equipment was packed up and taken away. I have washed anything that has had contact with honey or comb, because they know you've been bad if they smell that.

Safe back inside the house, I found bee bodies stuck in my clothing and quite a few bee stings where they had got inside a small tear on my overalls. I've had a shower, washed all equipment, and not even bothered with the stings. Besides the red spots, there is no allergic reaction whatsoever,

but what about my arthritis in my hand and my knee? I remembered that bee venom could be beneficial and so looked this up.............

"As far back as around 400 B.C., Hippocrates - the Greek physician called the "father of medicine" - used bee venom to treat joint pain and swelling. Many people still find the stings of honeybees useful for medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA), skin disorders and multiple sclerosis.

Honeybee venom contains at least 18 active substances known to be potent anti-inflammatory agents. These substances stimulate the body's release of the hormone cortisol as well as neurotransmitters such as dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin, all of which can help relieve the pain, stiffness and swelling of arthritis.

Bee stings are by no means a cure-all. Nor are they pleasant or easy to administer. For those reasons, I personally don't recommend bee stings to my patients. Nevertheless, I have two patients who are using bee stings with great success. They made a choice to be treated "more naturally." If they stop responding, then they know I have biologics and other medications waiting for them.

If you decide you would like to try bee stings, speak with your doctor. Like all complementary medicines, bee stings are best used in conjunction with medical diagnosis and advice. It's important that you be prepared for a severe allergic reaction by having a bee sting allergy kit on hand - even if you've never reacted negatively to bee stings in the past. Although the side effects of bee-venom therapy usually are mild, an allergic reaction to a sting could potentially be deadly."


I can do my own therapy.

Lost in Cyberspace

Painting for today
'Boot Scootin' Babies' ~ around 1993. Acrylic on board.
Not For Sale

I still have this one 'cos I love it .......


My friends and family enjoy my blog, and so do some others who wander in and out. I enjoy it because it is a simple diary of my day to day life and will be great to read back later when those events and photos have drifted into the mists of time.

I try hard not to grumble or bitch, say things about people I know who might be hurt, and not expose my 'soft underbelly' (got one of those!).

A while back I talked about a neighbour I nearly ran over on the road. He is notoriously casual about his safety, and just a bit of a 'thickie'. He often walks an Old English Sheepdog, and on that day, was wandering in the middle of the road on a blind corner.

A OES forum moderator must have googled OES and my blog came up. He, trying to be funny, put in a snippet about what I had said on the forum, with a link through to my blog.

My stat counter told me 71 people came in on one day from that forum. One was very nasty and talked about going to the next OES meeting in our state to try and find out who my dumbo neighbour was and dump on me.

Needless to say, I took that small, supposed-to-be funny snippet out. The moderator got into my 'comments' and we had a few backwards and forwards. Initially, he tried to lecture me on how fast to drive on the road (all the way from the US!), but once I clarified the danger dill-pot put himself, the dog, and I in, we parted company as friends.

The power of the Web!

I have written about my motorcycle accident as a record for possible compensation when my injuries have stabilised.

Sometimes when I am chatting on the phone to a friend, she might say, "I read about that on your blog!", which is pretty amusing, as they are often more up to date with my life than I am with theirs.

I am nervous about the power of Blogger to retain this valuable record of my life, and have decided to copy the whole thing out and save it as a word document, with photos intact. I have it on my hard drive, and on my external storage drive. I might even print it out one day and put it in a folder, which would be the ultimate. My laser printer badly needs a service and fresh ink, and once that's done, I'll do it.

The only complication is that it will need to be read from the back page forwards!

"Memory is a way of holding onto the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose. "
... From the television show 'The Wonder Years'

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Waiting, waiting..........

'Gaze' ~ Watercolour ~ unframed
~ $120 ~

A lovely lady, 'Dysthymiac', who browses my blog occasionally, recently made a generous reference to my paintings. Since my accident I have not done much, but intend to once all issues are dealt with, and I am functioning 'as well as I can expect'.

I have lots of work tucked away in my studio, so will pop one in here occasionally while I wait for my inspiration to flower again.


Such a sore leg, and waiting for TAC (insurance) to approve surgery. They've OK'd the wrist, but not the knee yet, and want more information from the surgeon, who won't be able to do that until Wednesday. A long drawn out process. Then he may have to convince them that although I have some age related degeneration in that knee, there is injury from the accident as well.

If there's a problem, I'll tell them pre-accident I was riding a 600lb motorcycle, which requires standing on that leg and swiveling to mount, and needing strength in the legs to hold the bloody thing upright. I couldn't do that now.

I got a copy of the MRI report from my GP on Friday, and I have a radial tear in one meniscus (cartilage), bone on bone on one side with
no cartilage, assorted cysts and ganglions, and fluid tracking down one tendon. No wonder it bloody well hurts!

The surgeon will probably get in there for a look and schedule a knee replacement.


Whinge over!

I want it to rain as well!

Yesterday we picked up my grandson and went out for a trip to a huge market at Akoonah Park, Berwick yesterday. It has around 250 stalls of all kinds of goods ~ plants, secondhand bric-a-brac, clothes, tools, toys, and much more. I bought a terrific t-shirt there maybe a year ago, and it has been
the best, so hoped he might still be there so I could buy more. He was!

I had my old one on and told him how much I liked it, and he was delighted. It's not hard to make people feel good, if only for a minute or two.

Loaded up with t-shirts, a few plants and a tiny derringer style laser gun for Blake so he could shoot red spots up the walls for the cat to chase, we had a coffee and raisin toast in a nearby cafe.

A crystals and gemstone shop in the arcade opened up a whole new world for us, and we peered at meteorites from Russia, China and the Australian outback. There were tall columns of mauve crystals for $6000+, and marvelous magnetic 'whatsits' that crackled furiously as you tossed and caught them. The owner was very generous with her time and took us around describing different items of interest. I might sneak back and get two 'whatsits' for Blake's birthday next Monday.

We dropped Blake off and had a cuppa with the family, then made a delivery of two antique walking sticks to a friend nearby for her collection. She had bought them via auction from Ballarat some months back and they finally made their way to her.

Another cup of beautiful coffee each and then home for an icy can of beer on the veranda. There were storm clouds all around; the wind picked up and lightning crackled on the horizon. It was steamy hot, and we sat there willing the rain to come. I had checked the weather radar, which told us there was rain just over the hill.

We had our driest January in eight years, and February is not much better. Our area usually has a high rainfall, but not for the last year or two. Our tanks are low again, and the garden is parched. If wanting could make it happen, I couldn't want any harder.

But no, it stopped there, and the sky cleared. More storms predicted today, and I'm hovering over the radar again, but I'm giving in and going to water the veggies.

Maybe no rain today after all.........

"Anyone who says sunshine brings happiness has never danced in the rain"
... unknown

Friday, February 1, 2008

Another one! I am sooooo lucky today......

I'm gonna be real rich...........

"Dear Friend,
Do accept my apologies if my mail does not meet your personal ethics, I want to introduce myself and this business opportunity to you. My name is Barrister Frank James, a solicitor at law. I wish to know if we can work together.

I would like you to stand as the next of kin to my deceased client who made some deposits to a bank. He died without any registered next of kin and as such the funds now have an open beneficiary mandate.

Fortunately, I am the processing attorney so it will be very easy to make you become his official next of kin. If you are interested you do let me know so that I can give you comprehensive details on what we are to do.

I urgently hope to get your response as soon as possible.

Best regards,
Barrister Frank James,


"Truth, like gold, is to be obtained not by its growth, but by washing away from it all that is not gold. "
... Leo Tolstoy