You know you’re Australian when….

It’s Australia Day today, 26 January, the official national day of Australia 

AustraliaDayThongsBeach

There is a serious side to our National Day which I blogged about last year in my A-Z of Australia segment, so this year I wanted show you a lighter side to our Australia Day.
Aussies celebrate this day with BBQ’s, get-togethers with friends and family at the beach, parks, at home - in fact, anywhere we can eat and drink with friends and have fun!

BBQCheersMate

Here’s a little anecdote about Aussies – enjoy
(…and if you need a translation, just ask!)

YOU KNOW YOU’RE AUSTRALIAN WHEN:

You believe that stubbies can either be drunk or worn.
You pronounce Melbourne as ‘Mel-bin’.
You believe that the letter ’I’ in Australia is optional, and it’s a perfectly reasonable name for a place.
‘I’ in Australia is optional, and it’s perfectly ok to call it ‘Straya’.
You think ‘Wooloomooloo’ is a perfectly reasonable name for a place.
You’re secretly proud of a country to have a $1 coin that is twice as big as a $2 coin.
You understand that ‘Wagga Wagga’ can be abbreviated to ‘Wagga’ but ‘Woy Woy’ cannot be just ‘Woy’.
Beetroot with your hamburger….of course!
You wear ugg boots outside the house.
You believe that the more you shorten someone’s name, the more you like them.
You understand that ‘excuse me’ can sound rude, but ‘scuse me’ is always polite.
You know it’s not summer until the steering wheel is too hot to handle and a seat belt buckle becomes a pretty good branding iron.
You know how to abbreviate every word, all of which usually end in ‘o’:  arvo, convo, garbo, lezzo, metho, milko, mso, servo, smoko, rego, speedo, righto, etc….
You know that there is a universal place called ‘Woop Woop’ located in the middle of nowhere, no matter where you actually are!
And you can understand all of this, had a giggle, and tell all your aussie and international friends.

I love it’s Golden Beaches and Green Hinterland!
AussieAussieAussie

HappyAustraliaDayMate                I love Australia!                     

**http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia_Day

**http://www.timeanddate.com/holidays/australia/australia-day

Burrum Heads

B is for Burrum Heads


My A-Z of Australia

B is for Burrum Heads, Queensland

Can you imagine living in a small, out-of-the way seaside village where most of the locals know each other, take the time to chat over the garden fence, where there is a feeling of real community spirit, and where neighbours actually care about each other?

When I retired, I wanted to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life. I wanted to find somewhere quiet where I could relax, and also enjoy my passion for photography, somewhere I could listen to the birds sing and enjoy seeing and photographing some of our unique wildlife in their natural habitat. I love the ocean, so it had to be near a beach, a place where I could enjoy long walks with my dogs, and not too hilly so I could ride my bike in comfort.
I found such a place that has all that and more . . .  a sleepy little fishing village called Burrum Heads, a four hour drive north from where I lived in the city, or three hours from Brisbane, the capital city of Queensland. Peace and tranquility abound in this little backwater of only 1,200 residents.

Burrum Heads

It isn’t a town you pass through on the way to some other destination, so if you miss the turn-off sign from the highway, you miss the town – there is only one road in and the same road out! The town is surrounded by National Park right down to the beach, so wildlife abounds! My passion for animals will be quenched here!
Everyone is friendly and most people know one other, at least by sight, and there is always someone ready to stop and have a chat.

One Road In . . . One Road Out

The aroma of coffee filters through the air as you walk past the shops – go grab one and sit at one of the outside tables along the row of shops across from the beach and watch the world go by. Unwind and  relax -  it’s that kind of place!

There are not many shops here, but enough for the necessities of life – the nearest reasonable sized town is half an hour away.
Burrum has a

  • Supermarket
  • Post Office
  • Pharmacy
  • Medical Centre
  • Gas Station
  • Two Hairdressers
  • Butcher
  • Beautician (Nails)
  • Fast Food Shop
  • Hardware Store that sells everything
  • A Bakery who make their own fresh bread and cakes daily. Their cakes are to die for!
  • And of course, a Real Estate office

Fancy eating out? Try the Pub or the Bowls Club, both serve delicious meals. There is a Library in the Community Centre where you can take a Yoga Class, or enjoy Thai Chi on the foreshore and have a laugh with the others who can’t get their co-ordination right either!

There are two caravan parks to cater for the influx of tourists who return here year after year to enjoy the fishing and sailing for which Burrum Heads is renowned.  One of the caravan sites is right on the beachfront so you can wake up to an amazing ocean view every morning!

A fishing competition is held annually at Easter over two days, and people come from far and near to try their luck, as there are tempting prizes to be won! Fishing is a serious business here – the place is buzzing!

There are a few stalls selling hot and cold foods, drinks, ice cream, cotton candy, beachwear, a jumping castle for the children – and you can even take your dog!

Have a boat? No worries – there are two boat ramps to choose from to get your boat into the water. Explore the rivers and creeks in a small boat (we call them tinnies), or canoe, or just take advantage of the clear, warm water.

Life is simple here, nothing fancy, no skyscrapers, no bright lights, no crime to speak of, no traffic jams – heck, we don’t even have any traffic lights! Nope, I don’t miss city life at all!

HappyAusDayKoala

My A-Z of Australia-Australia Day

Australia Day is the official national day of Australia, celebrated on 26th January annually, and as it is only days away, I thought it would be appropriate to tell you how it came to be.

On 26th January in 1788, the First Fleet of eleven ships arrived from Great Britain at Port Jackson, which now forms Sydney Harbour. By 1808, the 26th January was being celebrated as ‘First Landing Day’ or ‘Foundation Day’. This day became a public holiday in 1838, being the first public celebrations of the founding of Australia.
Over the years, 26th January has been known by many names – First Landing Day, Foundation Day and Anniversary Day. It wasn’t until 1935 when it became Australia Day in all states except New South Wales, where it was still called Anniversary Day. However, by 1946, it was known in all states as Australia Day.

It took them a long time to sort that one out!

 

However, Indigenous Australians – the Aboriginal people, felt that the celebrations on Australia Day excluded them and their culture – a culture that had been thriving for thousands of years before the arrival of the First Fleet from Britain. Proposals have been made to change the date, but without much public support. You can read the whole story here www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia_Day

On this day Australia also celebrates the achievement and contribution of notable Australians through the Australian of the Year Awards, by profiling leading citizens who are role models for us all.

Australia Day is a public holiday which means a welcome day off work for most, and all schools are closed. It’s a day for BBQ’s, the beach and back-yard cricket!
Community events are held in most city parks for the public to enjoy the fun, food, music and entertainment to suit everyone. The entertainment could include a Circus, Wood-chopping, camel/pony rides, face-painting, animal nursery, sheep shearing, blacksmith, snake shows – and of course, some tasty Aussie tucker (food)!  Something for everyone!

For those who want to celebrate on a smaller scale, there will be lots of bar-b-queues in back yards that day!

Prawns on the barbie!

We live out of town, so our street is having its own celebrations – the obligatory Aussie BBQ – and good food. Seafood is a must for most Aussies that day, so I’ll be picking up some lovely fresh Tiger Prawns to throw on the barbie! It’s also a good way to meet new neighbours who might be new to our area.

Sydney Harbour Regatta (the oldest continuous regatta in the world) where millions of boats and vessels race together in celebration – a fantastic spectacle!

The beach is a popular place on Australia Day to beat the heat. January is very hot. Sounds like a good idea to me!

You can bet that whatever Aussies choose to do on the day, it will be FUN!

Anyone coming? Just bring your own drinks and you’ll be right, mate!

DogLeftInHotCar

Dogs Die In Hot Cars-Fact

Yesterday I enjoyed a morning at the beach – but my afternoon was ruined.

The Good

The temperature yesterday was 31 degrees here in Australia (it’s our summer now), so the hub and I decided to have some time out at the beach to try to cool down a little. We went to Woodgate Beach, which is the last open surf beach in the state of Queensland going north, before the Great Barrier Reef starts – there is no surf after that.  It’s a bit off the beaten track, but well worth it, as you can see – this is what awaited us.

There was only one other person on   the beach, right at the other end, so we basically had it to ourselves. The water was crisp, clear and clean – and oh, so cool! There were lots of cuttlefish bones scattered all over the beach that had been washed up, so we collected some for our friend who has a cockatiel. Birds just love the stuff, and it’s good for them.

The Bad

On the way home we stopped off at a shopping centre to pick up few groceries. As we were parking the car, we could hear a dog crying very loudly and as we scanned the parked cars, we saw it at a window of one of the cars. The window was only open a tiny bit so the poor little mite wasn’t getting much air in there, and it was so terribly hot. The dog was extremely distressed, and other people had gathered round the car wondering what to do. Someone said they had reported it to the supermarket who said they would call the owners on loudspeaker to tell them to get to their car quickly.

In a situation like this, every second counts and I couldn’t bear to wait around listening to that poor little dog, so I headed up to the supermarket to report it again; just as I set off, I saw the owner making his way to the car. You can imagine how angry I was, so I went over to tear him to strips for putting his dog in danger like that – but another woman had beaten me to it. She was livid – yelling at him, and really giving him a piece of her mind. That’s what I wanted to do, she stole my thunder – but I could see it was having no effect on this man . . . I think he’d shut off his ears to the colourful language that was coming out of her mouth!

So I waited my turn . . . .

When the woman left, I approached the dog owner calmly, and keeping my voice soft and low, I started talking to him about the dangers of leaving his dog in the car on such a hot day. I wanted to rip his head off but that wouldn’t have got me anywhere, or helped the dog, so I was quite surprised at my tactical approach!

Anyway, it seemed to work, because he calmed down and listened to me, heck, we even had a two-way conversation about it. They say that a touch can calm a person down, so I put my hand gently on his forearm – just for a second – and it worked, because he started to talk to me more. I patted his dog, all the while explaining the danger he had put his dog in, and the tragic consequences.
I explained that it can get unbearably hot inside a car on a sunny day, but even when it’s not that warm, say, 72F/22C outside, the temperature inside a car can soar to 117F/47C in less than an hour. Isn’t it better to leave the dog at home where he can keep cool and has access to his water bowl?

It takes a dog six agonizing minutes to die in a hot car.

I hope and pray that I got through to him.

Our pets are precious – please don’t let them down, they rely on us.

In spite of seeing incidents like this being reported in the news on a regular basis, why do people still take the risk – even leaving children in the car on a hot day?

We are just not learning, and sometimes with tragic consequences.

Brighten Your Day With a Song

I received this video clip in an email from a friend this morning, and it was the best start to the day
I have had in a while, so I had to share it.

Relax – sit back – listen – watch . . . enjoy! 

Photos of Exuma Islands put the music of Zac Brown Band’s “Knee Deep” – the perfect song

for the most beautiful water in the Bahamas.

Being ill is such a Waste of Time

We have been in our new house for three weeks now and it’s starting to look a bit more like home. We have worked incessantly every day and believe it or not, have unpacked all our boxes – yes, every single box – all gone – even the empty ones from the garage!

Our Family Room-not a box in sight!

 

However, during our first two weeks in our new home, I picked up some kind of virus (I hardly ever get sick), so I have spent the last five days in bed with a fever, aching limbs, nauseous – and so unbelievably tired.  I was useless, I couldn’t lift a finger to help my hubby; all I wanted to do was sleep – and I did!

I could hear my hubby emptying boxes in the other rooms and putting stuff away, but I couldn’t have cared less. Not like me again – I like to be in the thick of things! Not once in my delirious state did I ever think about what still needed to be done in the house, so  my poor hubby coped with everything - as well as looking after me!

Then yesterday I knew I was starting to feel better because I was thinking of jobs that needed to be done. Good as my lovely hubby is, he has no idea how to hang drapes, arrange the crystal in the cabinets – you know – the types of jobs where most men are absolutely useless!  I also needed to make some home-made soup, my dog Poppy needed a bath, I should be going outside in the garden to see what needs to be done, I have to get my vegie patch started soon – and so on – my mind was running wild!
I didn’t do any of that yesterday, the hub made me stay where I was, but today I was rarin’ to go! I got some of the drapes hung and made some soup – and that was the end of me; I went back to bed exhausted – and slept! I couldn’t believe it, that’s not me.
I hate being sick.

Anyway, tomorrow is a new day . . .

Just want to bring you up to date on everything so here are some photos I took before I got sick.

This walkway winds along by the ocean, so no excuse for not getting some kind of exercise either walking or biking. It’s lined with trees, so nice and shady for our hot sun.

 

The road leading up to the boat ramp and the beach

 

The Beach

 

Sequel to Moving House

The move went very smoothly and it didn’t rain!  The removal guys were great – until they put a dent in our fridge and gouged a hole in the wall when bringing the fridge in the house.  Not happy about that,  just one of those things I guess; other than that they were good guys, very helpful.

We have such a lot of furniture and it made me realize just how much when I saw it all packed up in the wagon – do we own all that stuff? Gotta get rid of some!  When we are settled, we must have a garage sale.

We’ve been madly unpacking since we moved in just over a week ago now, and the place is starting to take shape with all our “stuff” round us. Think we’ve been trying to get it all done too quickly, as we have both been feeling physically sick with exhaustion and aching limbs.  Seriously – my hubby cut his finger quite badly due to lack of concentration when he was opening one of the boxes with a knife; he is usually so careful.  He slept for 4 hours the other afternoon because his body just wouldn’t work!

"Is this our new home?'"

Our dog Poppy has been quite confused with the goings-on, but now, after a week, she seems more settled than we are! As long as she has her mom and dad and some of her favorite toys, she’s happy!

I’m sure she would be content in a tent as long as we were with her; sometimes I wish our lives were that simple!

Blank Canvas

We have a fairly large yard, which at the moment, is devoid of all plants – only grass, and although it means a lot of work, I’m glad, because I have a blank canvas to work on – I can start from scratch and have it exactly the way I want it.

A veggie patch is the first thing I want to get cracking on; love those home-grown veggies!

First Visitor - the Kookaburra

These guys are our first visitors – the laughing kookaburra, and I’m elated that they flew down to check us out.

. . . and then there were three!

As you know, one of the reasons I loved our other place so much was because of the abundance of wildlife and native birds and the colorful parrots, so being visited already by these guys has lifted my heart. The signs are good.

I haven’t walked along the beach yet so there might be more surprises in store for me – sea eagles perhaps, or even dolphins?  Will get down there asap and take more pics.

So looking back to the day we moved, Friday the 13th turned out fine – no catastrophes to relate to you, and things are settling down and getting back to some kind of normality in the Taylor household.

It’s good to be back online again, I was having withdrawals after a week without the internet!  Makes me wonder how we managed before it became so much a part of our lives.

Anyone for the Beach?

Rainbow Beach is one of my favourite beaches along the East Coast of Australia; it is in the Wide Bay region of Queensland, Australia.  The water is clean and clear – so clear you can see the fish swimming around your feet, tickling your toes!  It’s a great beach for both swimming or surfing and it never seems to get too crowded. There is ample space to stretch out your towel and pitch a windbreak if you so wish, for some protection from the hot sun.

Dogs are allowed on certain sections of the beach which is a bonus for dog owners, as we know how much most dogs love to jump about in the surf to catch a stick or a ball!

The beach is made up of fine, almost white sand which is so fine, when you walk on it, it squeaks under your feet!

However, it wasn’t always known by this pretty name – this beach was home to a large sand mining industry until 1976, and was known as Back Beach. The current name comes from the unusual rainbow coloured sand cliffs – and they really are all the colours of the rainbow!
So giving it the name of Rainbow Beach seemed very fitting!

Rainbow Beach, Qld

In an Aboriginal legend the cliffs were coloured when Yiningie (the spirit of the Gods representing Rainbow) was killed in a fight, spreading his ‘colourful’ spirits across the cliffs.

There are walking treks round the area, but if you like a bit more action, there is hang gliding, paragliding or scenic flights – a truly unforgettable experience.
Like to fish? The area is renowned for great fishing. In fact, Four Wheel Drives are allowed right on the beach!

Slightly to the north of Rainbow Beach at Inskip Point, you can catch a ferry over to the world famous Fraser Island – the largest sand island in the world. It is said that this is the only place now where there are any pure-bred dingoes left. A word of warning though – please do not feed the dingoes!

This is truly an awesome spot with plenty of activities to keep everyone happy, and if you ever get the chance, you should put it on your list of places to visit!

http://www.rainbow-beach.org/

Weekly Photo Challenge – Ocean

If you are participating in the Weekly Photo Challenge, please feel free to post your link in the comments below.

This week’s challenge is ‘Ocean’.

I have always lived fairly close to the ocean as I love to walk on the beach with my dog and breathe in the fresh salt air and feel the wind in my hair and warm sun on my body.
I love watching surfers catching huge waves and wonder why there are never many accidents – my son tells me “It’s every man for himself out there!”  He has been surfing since he was 9 years old and has never been hurt yet!
The sound of the waves as they come crashing down on the beach leaves me in awe at the power of the ocean!

I live on the Eastern side of Australia so these photographs are of the Pacific Ocean.

Ellis Beach, Far North Queensland

I took this when I was on vacation up in Far North Queensland, just north of the city of Cairns. The islands in the distance are the Whitsunday Islands. The ocean is as blue as this photo shows, and the beaches are fine, golden sand.

Gold Coast

This is Burleigh Heads Beach on the Gold Coast, where I used to live, an hour south of Brisbane city.
The beaches here are beautiful with soft, white sand, great surf and a beautiful ocean.

Toogoom Beach

This is near where I live now, a 5 minute drive. There is no surf here so you don’t have to compete with the waves for a decent swim! We still have the beautiful white sand and blue ocean, and it’s a lot quieter – we often have the beach to ourselves!

Who wants to come visit?