Thursday, 30 June 2016

June 29th Spiders!

Spiders on the television that is. Well actually it was a movie we watched called Spiders. It has to be one of the most stupid and ridiculous movies ever seen. It was that bad, that we could not stop watching it. The main actress spent the whole movie crying, but it was an extremely manufactured cry. It didn't help that she had plastic face and absolutely not one part of her face moved at all - even her mouth appeared stationery when she talked, when she wasn't crying that is.

As for the stars of the show. There were plenty of them

Peek a boo

I'm coming to get you

Here's looking at you kid

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

June 28th Who's Is Whose

Don't you just love the English language. Look at my subject line, which says Who's is Whose. I just repeated it down here for those of you too lazy to lift your eyeballs to look up there. Back to the English language. Look at that - two words pronounced exactly the same, but one with an apostrophe and one without and the letter 'e' added at the end.Which is nothing to do with my photo. I only brought this up, because I have fuzzy wuzzy brain as I am writing this, and I had to google to make sure my spelling was correct! You never know just when those Grammar Police may pop up.

Let's get to the real subject on hand which is focusing on the fact that we dined out. It was a day at the hairdressers for me, so with a new hot shade of pink on my tresses, I thought it would be nice to go out. Check out the photos, and there are absolutely no prizes for guessing which was George's meal, and which was mine.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

June 27th Just One Question

The look I kept getting from Minnie today, was as if she was asking "Please Mum, just one question. Please tell me when this Winter is going to end? I don't like going outside to pee and either it is pouring down and I get wet, or the grass is so wet I have a horrible wet belly. All I can hear is the wind and it keeps raining. It gets dark so very early and it is cold outside. I know you really wanted to have a walk with me today, but I understand. It was just too stormy for us to go out. But when will Winter end?"

Monday, 27 June 2016

June 25th to 26th Yep - The Weekend

I was a work widow for the two days as George had to work. He did get to come home in the evenings of course, but the days were mine alone.

On Saturday I went out to my son's house, which was the family home, and was in shock to see this tree. Why? Because a good 15 to 20 years years ago I bought an inside pot plant. Off the top of my head it was called China Lace? I was advised it was definitely an indoor only plant and was quite hardy.

Well this plant was definitely hardy. It outgrew it's welcome inside. Totally unsure of where to plant it, I decided it could go in a sheltered spot straight into a dirt patch out the back. If it survived all well and good, and if it didn't - well worse things have happened at sea.  Forward the clock  to now - and this is the indoor pot plant. I am sure glad we moved it outside

Then in the blink of an eye it was Sunday. George was at work. The weather was exactly the same as previous, which can drive a good woman to drink. Well even a bad woman like me. I did manage to get half way around the block walking Minnie, before the heavens opened. So it was a day spent tucked up on the couch with a good red (bottle of wine that is).  And eating comfort food - a wonderful hearty bacon hock vegetable soup.

Saturday, 25 June 2016

June 24th Portals To The Underworld

I have never really taken much notice of them before, but they have been there. Secret portals to the Underworld. I found various ones whilst on my walk with Minnie today.

The first one was of concern with the initials F. H.  I think this is for the Fool Hardy

Next up we start getting more serious. V... obviously Vandals only are allowed down this portal

Then it gets very serious, this one is for Hard Core Criminals only

There is some semblance of social conscience down there. You have to be 10 and over to enter

This is where the big boys step in. The tough guns. The James Bond's of the Underworld. The Secret Service

Yes, yes I confess! I watch too many movies and my brain has been Hollywood-ized!

Friday, 24 June 2016

June 23rd The Dull Wear Dash

The wonderful view I had looking out my car windscreen

Why I had this view is because I decided I would head out to buy myself some lunch. I had a hankering for some battered Bluff Oysters. When the hankering comes calling, you don't muck about. You indulge your desires. So Bluff Oysters for lunch it was.

Now because it was a quick dash to the best fish n chip shop that makes battered Bluff Oysters worth salivating  over  (5 minute drive each direction) and the wait inside is longer, I thought it would be safe to do the dash without getting dolled up to go out. Comb of the hair, bleary eyes, forget any jewellery,  footwear - nothing special. You get my drift. Except as always happens when I decide to do a dull wear dash - I bump into a customer. Inside the Fish n Chip shop.  I didn't even see her until I hear the stomach dropping words 'Hello Irene'.  I cast a glance and there she is - in all her resplendent glory. Perfect make up,  perfect hair,  perfect clothes - accessorised just perfect. A perfect vision - and as for me? Leggings, big thick hoody and looking the total opposite. In a Fish n Chip shop.

But I did end up with a damned good lunch

Thursday, 23 June 2016

June 22nd Black and White Theme

Out on my walk with Minnie today firstly we encountered the unusual. I don't know where the occupant of this wheelchair was. It was certainly empty and there was no one around at all. We were the only living things on the street (well apart from birds, ants, spiders, hidden mice, maybe the odd rat - you get my drift)

I decided my photos for today required a Black and White theme. It was a very dismal and grey day, and not a person in sight on our entire walk

I am so glad this isn't our house. I have never seen a living occupant here, but there are vehicles at times.

Roses are taking a battering in the wind and rain

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

June 21st Bad Grammar

Today was the Winter Solstice and the shortest day of the year. So whilst the days will now start getting longer, they will also start getting colder, which is enough to drive any man, or woman, to drink or to dig out the stash of happy pills.

One thing that did brighten up my day however was this very bad spam supposedly received from Apple. Oh no, my iTunes account is going to be closed down. Oh no I face hell and damnation.

Take a minute to read the very bad English wording throughout the entire body of the email. Please Spammers, if you are going to spam me, can  I ask that you at least use the correct grammar?

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

June 20th Goodbye Yellow Brick Road

Or this heading should read Goodbye Yellow Leaf Path. It was a bit overwhelming to be on this path with Minnie today. At least I had no problem spotting her

Actually just the following comment, which has nothing to do with this photo. Because I am having a brain fart moment, I actually had to google how to correctly spell Goodbye. Was it one word or two words? I did have it spelt correctly, but just in case any of the Word Police were reading, I wanted to have it right. But then it lead me to thinking: why is Goodbye one word, and yet Good Morning is two words? 

Monday, 20 June 2016

June 17th to 19th Being Social With A Side Of Pumpkin

The weekend was a social one for us. Friday started with the monthly gathering for the cards, ie our monthly card evening with Cristina, Crae and Bryan. We always play 2 games each time. Now if I had won at least one of those games, I would have a lot to say. But I didn't win. So instead of focusing on an extremely rare and negative outcome, I am just going to say what a wonderful social evening we had. A good time was had by all. We got to bed at some ungodly hour which doesn't suit these creaking bones of mine, and to quote those famous words of Arnie... I Veel Be Buck!!

Saturday was quieter. So much quieter that my only focus was on food. George was throwing a steak on the BBQ for his dinner, and I opted instead to make a hearty Thai Pumpkin Curry Soup

Sunday finished off on a lovely note. My old friend Debby and her hubby Vinnie called in for a catch up. Debby and I met each other through an international travel  chat room on way back in 2000. And surprise, surprise we were both located in NZ - Debbie up in Auckland, and now recently moved here to Hamilton, my city of residence. So we have a long association. And they have effectively moved in to our 'hood, living maybe 1km away?  This definitely called for a catch up and for our respective partners to get to know each other as well.

Here's cheers to Vinnie (the only one willing to pose for a photo and a great baker of Banana Cake,  and who is allowed to return as he did quite like our home made wine)

Friday, 17 June 2016

June 16th Disconcerting?

Well this is just a tad disconcerting, and I never picked this up at time of purchase. Usually if there is a list of ingredients on a label, I do check out what my purchase is comprised of. I am not only talking food here, but also mouthwashes, toothpastes etc.

It was only today when I started a new deodorant already purchased (I must have had a lapse of concentration the day I put it in my supermarket trolley), that to view the ingredients, you actually had to peel off a top label. Which is where the barcode is, which actually could lead you to being accused of tampering?

Maybe I am being paranoid, but shouldn't this type of information be easily accessible without having to resort to lifting a label in a store? Which wasn't easy to do, as I did give it a go here at home. I think it's time to get the tin foil hat out of storage

Thursday, 16 June 2016

June 15th Shock! Gasp! Horror!

No photo today folks. I know you must be wondering what is going on with the world. Is it ending? Is that a bird in the sky? Does this mean, does this mean. Oh no!  Does this mean the end? Irene did not take a photo.

Rest easy! The world isn't ending and I did take a photo. After all, I did promise over 5 1/2 years ago to take a photo every day, and I have never not yet met my promise.

The only problem is that the photo I did take is a very bad one. Then I got sidetracked. Well not really sidetracked. A certain four letter word got me thinking of other things. OMG.. You are thinking of THAT four letter word aren't you! The four letter word I am referring to is WORK!!  I would never have believed it of you. Get that mind of yours out of the gutter - immediately! This instant! It was work, work and more work.

Back to the one and only, allow me to present...... drum roll please..... my office ceiling!

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

June 14th Splash The Cash

New Zealand recently released a new set of style of bank notes. It wasn't until I actually received some $50 notes, that I realised how I very rarely see actual physical cash any more.

Coins are that few and far between, and due to changes a few years ago to them as well, I wouldn't have a clue as to what is what. Everything is all plastic fantastic

I remember reading in my teens (unfortunately many years ago) that cash would be replaced by little plastic cards and everyone pooh poohed the idea, thinking no way. And yet it has happened. Hence the reason for this photo. AlsoI think the bank notes look pretty cool.

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

June 13th It's A Wrap

It's time to offer some of the weaker garden plants some protection and give them a winter coat. Scenes like this are dotted all though our garden.  See you in three month's time Puka.

Monday, 13 June 2016

June 11th to 12th .. Sadness

I had a very quiet weekend, and you know what. I am glad I had a very quiet weekend. With the knowledge that I had my blog to write, I was wondering what photos I should use from the various ones taken each day of the weekend. That was my biggest dilemma.

Can you imagine waking this morning to the news of the biggest massacre in US history. I guess Facebook profiles will be changed to reflect the sadness and the grief being felt, but will this change things? It was just over 6 months ago we all  had the Paris flag across our profiles. It certainly does help us acknowledge our own grief and our own puzzlement as to what is happening with mankind. But it doesn't stop this hate happening.

The next thing I read on my Facebook feed, was this damning indictment of a part of NZ society.  This is the other end of the spectrum most of us never, ever see and don't want to see.  I am sure this is not just happening in New Zealand but is happening worldwide.

Just like the rest of you I have no answers. But on reflection I am grateful that my own personal biggest problem of the weekend was photography and blog related. Below are photos I took each day. Looking back, in hindsight, I am glad these were the photos I captured, and I am fortunate in my own personal life that this was my major dilemma.

There is still beauty in the world, both in the organic and inorganic.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

June 10th Travellers Galore

A holiday for me? No way Hose A! Oh how I wish. Temperatures have fallen, it is winter time. The sky seems to have taken on a permanent grey colour, with a little glimpse of blue every now and then. The sun has lost its warmth.

Was it only a week ago I was sitting on a deck, basking in short sleeves in sunshine,listening to crashing waves? That was the last glimpse of summer. And now myself, and many other NZ'ers are facing the realities of winter.

Which is where I step in due to my career choice. I start getting the serious phone calls to find customers holidays in sunnier and warmer climes close to home.Just today my focus has been on a luxury holiday on a small exclusive 5 star property on Aitutaki Island in the Cook Islands and flying Business Class. Next up don't worry what type of accommodation, but just get us a pool front room, and in Rarotonga. Noumea sounds nice - can you organise that? Next up let's go to Fiji,  Irene you decide,you know what we like. The last new booking... 8 days in Singapore is what we want for me, and the Mrs and the kids.

That was just today, and of course I have a lot of existing bookings being worked on. Meanwhile in my corner of the world, the inside temperature is reading as follows

And I am in a pretty good place, when you consider it is warm inside and my days focus has been on much warmer tropical climes. All I need now is a customer requesting that they pay and I travel with them as a personal concierge to pave the way at airports - as long as we can go our separate ways at the destination, and oh as long as I can have George accompany me, oh and as long as it is where I want to go and it is where I want to stay. Yep that's my dream holiday!

Friday, 10 June 2016

June 9th Colour Me Blue

Well Minnie's colour will be blue for the next 12 months. Her dog tag that is. Every year the colour changes so beady eyed dog officials can supposedly see if your dog is warranted and up to date. It was time for her renewal, which we did. However when seeing her new tag I realised a bit of a double standard exists here.

So it is alright to expect my female dog to wear a blue disc on her collar for a year. However in the nearly 12 years Minnie has been with us, she has never had a pink disc. If it's good enough for her to wear blue, surely it's good enough for others to wear pink for a year?

Thursday, 9 June 2016

June 8th My Indulgence

Don't worry, this photo of a vacuum cleaner isn't what I am referring to as my indulgence. It's the person who operates it, that is. I employ a cleaning company to come in monthly or as required, and to do a good deep clean of the house. For what I think is a very reasonable rate, they supply all the necessaries from cleaning products to mops, vacuums etc.

Because I work very long hours at home, this is a wonderful indulgence so I at least get to enjoy the spare time that I have here at home.

What was different about today's cleaner, is rather than being a lady turn up, it was a man. You never know who is going to turn up, apart from a text the night before confirming they are coming. I know it was a naughty misconception of me, to feel slightly shocked when I saw a man (aged at least in his late 30's). But he did the best and most thorough clean yet

When it got to 6 o'clock and I was still at my desk, it was such a nice feeling to look out of my confines and see and smell a sparkling clean house

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

June 7th Makin' Bacon

So we went away for the long weekend
we brought home uneaten food, for which we did spend
so no way would I put it in the bin
to me food waste is an ultimate sin

So home came some bacon, so streaky and nice
George had some good cooking advice
cook a few strips at a time and make sure to drain all the fat
this makes it crunchy and it is all that

But now we have all this bacon to eat
in sandwiches, for lunches, or for whatever:
it still is a lot of meat!

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

June 3rd to 6th - An Extended Long Holiday Weekend

We decided to make the most of a long holiday weekend and headed to our favourite beach on earth, Pukehina. The house that we had previously rented was sold earlier in the year, so it was time to spread our horizons and branch out into something new. It had to be dog friendly, have wonderful ocean views - and a dishwasher wouldn't go amiss.

I found this little beauty and after meeting the owner, it looks like this may end up being our new holiday home when we return to Pukehina

 Of course you have to celebrate a holiday at the beach, which I did on arrival

Every Morning was a frosty start

Fortunately our front deck was a sun trap, and many an hour was spent ensuring adequate levels of Vitamin D - even for Minnie

Signs of a frosty night ahead

Waking to this glorious sunrise

Friday, 3 June 2016

June 2nd I Am Doing It!!

After all these years, I have finally got all the processes underway to applying for New Zealand Citizenship. Even down to the necessary passport photos. Every single bit of documentation required, I  have sourced. I just need to get some copies witnessed and certified and it can be sent away

So after living in NZ for two long periods, the first being fifteen years, and the second being 31 years I am taking the first steps required. Let's hope I get accepted and the three speed camera fines I have incurred over the years aren't held against me!

Thursday, 2 June 2016

June 1st A Lot Of Nothing...

Today really did not lend itself to photographic shots. My only face to face contact was with Minnie. And if I really tell you the truth, it was a bad hair day, stay in my dressing gown because I haven't got time to get dressed day, don't lift my bum off this chair day - all day. One of those days where you feel your butt is fused into the chair. I most probably have a leather imprint on my butt, and aren't even aware of it!

As for dinner? Well George ended up having one of those days and didn't make it home at all. So my dinner was, was, was... umm a piece of left over fish from the night before.

So the above is the realistic version of A Day In The Life Of Irene... I could give you the Hollywood version if you prefer?

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

May 31st Living With An Engineer

For food storage purposes we have a chest freezer, which due to it's size resides in the garage. I think it may be a 300 litre capacity. Actually I have no idea but that sounded good. I just know it is long and deep. As I write this it is cold and 8 degrees celsius outside, so please don't expect me to pop out to take a photo.

Back to our chest freezer. Because it is so deep it is easy to lose track of what is actually stored there. OK it's labelled, but with me being so short I can't even get to the bottom. If I tried to take something from the bottom and was home alone, I stand a very good chance of being swallowed into its frozen depths and not submerging again. And between you and me, if that happened, then 8 degrees outside would be a summer's day!!

I have gone into waffle mode haven't I! The reason for this blog is that with a chest freezer like this, which I constantly complain and make derogatory comments about, George's engineering background came to the fore.  We made up an inventory of the freezer contents as below

This has now been transferred to a spreadsheet. First world problems, because now I have to remember to update the spreadsheet when I either take something out of the freezer or add to it.