Fluff and Feathers

I’ve previously shared with you some photos from our regular visits to the Botanic Gardens, but I have so many photos of the animals there that have just been sitting, waiting to be shared. So I thought it would be a nice way to brighten a dreary day, at least it’s dreary where I am.

I always see people calling them Botanical Gardens, though I’m 100% sure the sign to ours says botanic and not botanical, and have often wondered which was correct usage, and couldn’t start this post until I knew (stupid brain); so I turned to trusty Google to find out. It didn’t really help. The Wikipedia entry is for Botanical Gardens, but most of the following results (on the first page at least) were for particular Botanic Gardens around the country. Except for Tasmania, theirs is a Botanical Garden. So obviously it doesn’t really matter which you choose to use.

2013-05-25-Botanic Gardens-Donkey_small 2013-05-23-Botanic Gardens-Goose_small2013-04-13-Pigs-2_small 2013-04-13-Pigs_smallAll the animals up there have their own interesting personalities, and most of them love seeing people come through. Especially when we visited after some recent rain and cooler weather. The geese are so obnoxious, honking and hissing as they follow you begging for some food. They actually scare the kids a little because they’re so pushy and noisy. For some reason donkeys always sound like they’re sad, but always look like they’re smiling about something. The emus are scary as all get out, and I think they know they freak me out. One started leaning over the fence during our last visit, they can extend those necks a fairly long way; although they do make some amazing throaty sounds – almost like a didgeridoo.

Who knew pigs grew so fast? Well, I did, but some people may not. It was only about two months ago that the two photos of all three pigs were taken, and now they’re massive. I’m not sure what happens to the pigs when they get too big for the pen in the farm area, one was quite possibly the roast we had the other night. They would be perfect for crackling; I doubt they get much exercise to build muscle and make them all tough and gamey.

2013-05-25-Botanic Gardens-Pig_small 2013-05-25-Botanic Gardens-Alpaca_small 2013-05-23-Botanic Gardens-Donkey_small 2013-05-23-Botanic Gardens-Peacocks_small2013-04-16-Botanic Gardens-Emu_smallAlright, I had better save some for another time. I do enjoy taking the kids up there, but I’m not really sure how often we will visit over the colder months. I turn into a bit of a hermit over winter. Do you have any Winter activity suggestions?


Story Time Update

I haven’t posted about story time for a little while. There has been a few little changes around here. Well, maybe not so little. Phillip has started preschool one day a week (is it wrong to get a little bit excited about having one less child for the day?). He started about three weeks ago. At first Oliver wasn’t too happy about leaving Phillip there, but he’s getting used to it. It helps that they have both enjoyed having that time away from each other.

So story time has been just Oliver and I, it has been nice. Less hectic come craft time. I didn’t get many photos the first week. Oliver just wasn’t in the mood, he wouldn’t speak until after lunch; but the second week the theme was foxes, and they made a little fox mask. This week it was apparently National Simultaneous Storytime, the book that was chosen to be read was ‘The Wrong Book’ by Nick Bland. So at the end the craft was making a bobble head Nicholas Ickle, the little boy from the book.

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A Walk To Remember

On the weekend I was lucky enough to have a break from our three kids and was able to take a bit of a drive with the husband. We had heard about a cider festival being held in a little town nearby and had planned to check it out, Batlow is nestled in the Snowy Mountains and is famous for apples. During the week I was looking at the other sights around that area and found something called the Sugar Pine Walk not far from where we were headed, and after looking at some of the photos around the internet I was dying to visit. So visit we did.

Sugar Pine Walk - State Parks of NSWDon’t let the light in that photo fool you, that was probably the longest period the sun was out while we were up there. Fluffy snow clouds hung low overhead all day which made for a cold walk, but it was definitely worth it.

As we were getting out of the car and I was getting my gear ready, an older couple emerged from the trees. The gentleman had a camera around his neck and commented that it was ‘a little dull in there for photos’, so I was a little bit nervous about how my photos would turn out. I did take a tripod, but wasn’t able to use it because the base plate was still on my mums camera. Duh!

My husband and I wandered up the path, chatting about how cold it was, and this and that; but a couple of metres into the trees we stopped dead and looked around in amazement. I think there were a few exclamations of ‘wow’ while we took in our surroundings. It really is magical.

2013-05-18-Sugar Pine Walk-1_small2013-05-18-Sugar Pine Walk-5_smallIt was so quiet in there that you could hear the trees creaking as they swayed in the breeze. The ground was covered in pine needles, which made the ground as soft as carpet – maybe even softer. There are felled trees lying around with moss growing all over them, pine cones bigger than my husbands feet, and plenty of other wonders if you looked hard enough.2013-05-18-Sugar Pine Walk-4-Mossy stump_small

2013-05-18-Sugar Pine Walk-6-Toadstool-3_small  2013-05-18-Sugar Pine Walk-3-Toadstool-2_small 2013-05-18-Sugar Pine Walk-2-Toadstool-1_smallI wish I had a dedicated macro lens for those little fungi, the first of the three was smaller than a finger nail.

I imagine that the walk would change during the different seasons, we have been told it is especially wonderful after some snow fall, and I will definitely be heading back throughout the year.

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To Be Honest…

I haven’t posted for a while. Usually I would come on here and make excuses about not being good at keeping up with all the stuff in my life; but today I’m not going to. While that may be a little true, I do struggle sometimes, it’s not exactly with being organised.

I started this post with every intent of being honest about my procrastination, and now I can feel myself banging on with crap to push it back. Some people reading this may already know what it is I’m alluding to, some might be able to guess. It is hard to take the step to put it all out there, when that is a lot of the problem; but I hope being honest to myself, and whoever follows along, will help me take steps towards overcoming the issues.

I suffer from depression and anxiety.

I know it’s not uncommon for people to be battling a mental illness, but there does seem to still be a certain stigma attached to admitting you’re one of them. Happiness is a huge industry these days, it seems like there should be a quick fix. A one size fits all solution to being sad. Except that it’s more than just being sad. A lot more.

My biggest battle is the anxiety, it stops me from doing a lot of things – like posting on my blog regularly and having any confidence in myself what-so-ever. I feel like I only have myself to blame for the confidence thing, I have let my anxiety win for years. From missing an audition with my local university to gain entry into the acting course after I finished school, to being too scared to post photos anywhere for people to see. Some days I struggle just to make the short trip into my backyard to hang washing out.

I can’t count the number of times I have written a post on here, uploaded the photos, and laid everything out exactly how I wanted, only to trash the entire thing. I second guess myself on absolutely everything; mix that with a dash of introversion and slight perfectionist tendencies, and something I’m supposed to be enjoying can turn stressful pretty quickly.

It’s funny, a month ago I wouldn’t have been able to articulate any of this into a post, which means my head is starting to clear and everything is starting to take form in the lifting fog.

Now if only I could find a way to streamline all the information coming at me from social media, I’d probably be a close to normal functioning human person.

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