Choose life. Life is wonderful.

Friday, 17 January 2014


One does not play Bach without having done scales. But neither does one  play a scale merely for the sake of the scale.
 Simone Weil


I'm still here - here in my house in Blagownie, NSW, Australia.

I had thought I would have to sell it by now, but things have worked out a little better financially than I had thought they might.



I live in the suburb of Balgownie on the edge of the city Wollongong. I love living here against the mountain with Balgownie Village just down the street. Crepe myrtles line the main street of the village. They look particularly pretty at this time of year.



I bought a new sewing machine in August last year. I used it to do some mending of our caravan canvas. It's not the most stylish of caravans but the mending worked very well.



 Since then I have been a bit frightened to use my sewing machine  so on Monday  I booked in for  a free lesson at Vera’s Sewing Centre Fairy Meadow. It turns out that I can have unlimited free lessons.


The lesson was great and I learnt a lot about the machine. It does all sorts of exciting things.

The first thing I did was make my daughter J this rabbit for her birthday.



It is by no means my finest sewing. In fact it's quite a horrible little thing. I was quite nervous sewing it and I kept lifting my foot off the floor when I wanted the machine to stop, forgetting that this one is controlled by hand and not foot pedal as I have always been used to. So I managed to oversew a lot of the seams and put a nasty little cut in my finger. (Luckily no blood dripped onto rabbit.) The needle was positioned on the left and I can't remember how to move it into the middle so that made it a little more difficult. (Luckily I have another lesson scheduled  for Wednesday.)


I should point out at this stage that my daughter J is 34 and loves anything to do with rabbits. She will appreciate this because it is made by her mother with a lot of love - if not finesse.

  P:-) and I have been out in the boat again - on Lake Illawarra.

The brown splodge on the photo below is a jellyfish - about45 cm long. Every now and then one of these propels itself past the boat.



 These jellyfish are very beautiful. I hope I will be able to manage a better photo of one soon.

I took the next picture into the sun at about 6 o'clock in the evening, just as we were heading in.

I had a windfall this week. A sheet of newspaper blew into my drive way. It was a page of the Sydney Morning Herald and it was the crossword page. I love to do the Herald cryptic crossword, but since most of my news comes through the internet or TV I am not really interested in newspapers. I cannot justify buying the Herald each day for the crossword, but I really did enjoy working on this one that blew in.

The paper was slightly yellowed and quite brittle and was dated 17th December, 2013. It is a work in progress.

Most days our Church, Figtree Anglican Church, posts a reading with a commentary entitled Faithful Daily Read. I would like to share with you what I wrote in response to Faithful Daily Read on January 14th.


 From the time I was 10 when my father died suddenly to now, I have faced many life challenges that often made me feel isolated and always different to my peers. There are times I have simply clung to ‘the Rock’. When life expectations of money, relationships, children, ambitions and health go awry, if you have God as your rock you won’t go under. I haven’t.


Finally I have a simple hint. As I am no longer working I am having to prune my spending considerably and I am doing this in lots of little ways - learning as I go along. I have decided to share some of the things I am learning. I am working on the theory - Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves.


My cooking is vegetable based, using lots of fresh vegetables and simple recipes. I often used tomato paste as a flavor base. as well as cans of diced tomatoes. Tomato products, especially cooked tomato products, are a rich source lycopene.The American Cancer  Council wrote the following about tomatoes and lycopene.



How is it promoted for use?

Proponents claim that lycopene may lower the risk of heart disease; macular degenerative disease, an age-related illness that can lead to blindness; and lipid oxidation, the damage to normal fat molecules that can cause inflammation and disease. It is also said to lower LDL ("bad" cholesterol), enhance the body's defenses, and protect enzymes, DNA, and cellular fats.
A major claim for lycopene's benefits is in the prevention and treatment of cancers of the lung, prostate, stomach, bladder, cervix, skin, and, especially, prostate. In support of these claims regarding cancer, proponents note that lycopene is a powerful antioxidant, a compound that blocks the action of free radicals, activated oxygen molecules that can damage cells, and that several scientific studies have found lower risk of cancer among people who eat lycopene-rich foods.

What does it involve?

Tomatoes are the most concentrated food source of lycopene, although apricots, guava, watermelon, papaya, and pink grapefruit are also significant sources. Studies that looked at lycopene levels in the blood found that levels were higher after people ate cooked tomatoes than after they ate raw tomatoes or drank tomato juice. This suggests that lycopene in cooked tomato products such as tomato sauce or paste may be more readily absorbed by the body than lycopene in raw tomatoes. Eating lycopene-rich vegetables and fruits together with a small amount of oil or fat (for example, salad oil or cheese on pizza) increases the amount of lycopene absorbed by the intestines. Lycopene is also available in soft-gel capsule and liquid supplements. Dosages vary according to manufacturer.

So Tomato paste is really good for you and pretty cheap.

 Hint: Keep a jar of tomato paste in the freezer. It is easy to scoop out the amount you need for recipes. Much better than buying small tins and having to bin the left overs, or buying the sachets which are more expensive


Interesting sites



Photo source

This is a house in a truck. I would love to live in it. Click here to read more.  




Surreal digital art


Click here  to see some really interesting, highly imaginative surreal digital art.




Lending Kent bride wedding dress after theft on day of ceremony

Photo source


911 call led to dispatcher lending Kent bride wedding dress after theft on day of ceremony This is a very positive story. Click here  to read more.

Read more here:


  1. How wonderful it is to learn.. and how BEAUTIFUL! the Crepe myrtles are! xox

  2. Balgownie Village is beautiful. I have had a morning tea there once a couple of years back and the crepe myrtle trees are lovely. Isolation is a lonely feeling and one that is accentuated some circumstances. I covered a bit of it as a cancer patient in a couple of places Here's the most recent one I also found it interesting the article on lycopene in tomatoes. Just as well as I love and use tomatoes alot!