It was definitely only yesterday this wee munchkin was born, and proceeded to smile at us as he took over our world and made it his own.

 zachie born 2   z 35

Still has the bright bright eyes, a tad more hair - and still challenging his world head on.

  p 35

Imagination? Limitless I'd say. Creativity ? the same. Adventurosity ? In spades.

  box 2

Cartoon above reminded me so much of a Zachy escapade. He loves hide and seek - and is so hard to find, he has the ability to be perfectly still and quiet no matter how much calling goes on. SO, hiding under the bed - he found a flat plastic storage box with wheels, which was of course a perfect sled. Liberated it, rode it down the hill, (Nonna wittering in the background)eventually broke one wheel, so quietly put the box back under the bed and went on to something else. Nonna only took a day to recover.



        crayon 5 

And that night, just to emphasize his position in this family (on top) he organised us all to "colour in" the playhouse. Malkie may have built it, but Zachie knew how to make it pretty. So we did - coloured in i.e.

  crayon 1    crayon 2

  Some of us worked very hard, colouring and colouring.

     crayon 4

BUT some of us downed crayons very early. Just sayin'

     z bruvva

"Bruvva" (Lachlan) has had a very faithful shadow over the years. But this year, Zachie became a star in his own right - specially at soccer.

   z soccer 22

When you and your team-mates are only 4, soccer can be a bit overwhelming. Some cry, some run away, some hang onto Mom - not Zachie, he simply showed everyone how to play soccer.

   z chase

You get that little old ball and you kick it straight to the goal. 

  z soccer chas 2

Then you do it again, in case they haven't learnt yet.

       z soccer 4

Hardest part is the long walk back after each goal, but it does give you time to check your Mom is watching, and maybe taking a photo or two.

      z ride bike

Enough frivolity - Zachie knows that life has a serious side - he has a lot to learn at kindergarten. And to get there, he rides his bike up a very big hill. Mum and Trooper go with him - welllll, maybe this is fun too, eh Zachie ??

    at school 1

       at school 2

But when a young man like Zachie is at school, he has to sit up and listen carefully, and do everything his teacher tells him to do.

BUT, but, but - this looks like fun too. 

And why shouldn't it be, this is the best possible way to learn.

at naoonna 1 

I acknowledge I am biased, but this Nonna is very proud of the way young Zachie is growing up. He still has the cheeky grin he was born with, he still has the wildest imagination, and he still finds fun in every situation. He also has rather special parents who are endeavouring to give him the best possible childhood any young boy could wish for. Malkie and I love you, Zachie.


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Poetry ?? Why poetry ?? Who reads it anyway. Which is exactly my point.

In the hustle and bustle of our lives,we sometimes need to pause. Read a poem. Chill out. Be calm. 

Let the words simply flow over you.

           zen 5a

              The moon floats above the pines,

              And the night veranda is cold.

              As the ancient, clear sound comes from your fingertips.

              The old melody usually makes the listeners weep,

              But Zen music is beyond sentiment.    

                    (from my Zen daily readings)

            zen 7a

            Poem of the One World.

            This morning

            the beautiful white heron

            was floating along above the water.


            and then into the sky of this 

            the one world

            we all belong to


            where everything

            sooner or later

            is a part of everything else


            which thought made me feel

            for a little while

            quite beautiful myself.

 zen mary 12

The last poem was by Mary Oliver.

I found her small anthology somewhere in a bookstore - and fell in love with her work. The blurb about her is totally true -

"Oliver opens our eyes to the nature within, to its wild and its quiet. With startling clarity, humour and kindness."






I don't, of course, expect anyone to rush out and buy poetry. I would however, ask that you keep an open mind as to the beauty of words, and how they can be magical to read and dream over. Try it. You will be surprised.


Comments ? And maybe you have a poem you can tell me about (would love to hear from you)

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We took our grandies, Lachlan and Zach to a petting zoo in Atlanta. 

              jumping 2

It was actually part of a "Pumpkin Patch" on a local farm, just happened to have lots of interesting stuff - and a petting zoo, which is what I'm aiming for.

            feeding goat  

                Very obliging goat - he was SO hungry.


Tad surprised in one cage to come across an Australian emu and a raddled old turkey  - and even more surprising, they were best friends. They stayed together all day, even slept together at night. How amazing, but how nice for each to have found friendship in a zoo.

emu 3  turkey 10

           emu plus turkey

Since then I've discovered such an odd friendship is NOT that unusual (thank you, Roger)

dog and crow


After spending a lot of time alone in the same room of the owner's house, a crow and a dog grew fond of each other. The crow is almost always on the dog's back. The dog even barks when people try to touch his friend, the crow. The owner gave in and built a custom harness for more comfortable rides.



    iguana and cat

                  Sobe the iguana, and Johann the cat were both rescued by a woman in Brooklyn, NY.  Every day when the iguana is let out of her cage, she seeks out Johann for playtime, along with a rescue rabbit.

              gorilla and cat 

Koko the gorilla is famous for having learned to communicate by sign language. For her birthday one year, she made signs to her teacher that she wanted a kitten. Koko's teacher wasn't surprised, as Koko's two favourite books were about cats. They adopted a kitten from an abandoned litter and Koko showed great care and gentleness.

  giraffe 1a  giraffe 1b

                   giraffe c

A giraffe and an ostrich have formed an odd friendship at Busch Gardens in Florida.

                    hippo and goat

Humphrey the hippo was a house pet that became too large for the household. He was moved to the Rhino and Lion Nature Reserve in South Africa, where he was safe but very very lonely. A Cameroon Pygmy Mountain Goat climbed the fence into Humphrey's enclosure and befriended him. 

                  cat and bear

A stray cat wandered into this Asiatic bear's enclosure at the Berlin Zoo. It has been coming back frequently for 10 years to visit his friend.

   cat and dog 1

   After a family took in this stray cat, she grew fond of their elderly dog. Realizing the dog was blind, the cat took on the responsibility of leading the dog to his water, food, shade, and toys. She follows closely under his chin to guide him.

  fawn and 2

After a devastating forest fire, fire rescuers ran out of crates for the animals saved from the blaze. This fawn and baby bobcat were placed together in the office. Hours later, the firemen noticed they'd taked a liking to one another, and cuddled for the duration they were kept together.

   llama and dog 1   owls and dog 1

Can't tell you about the dog and the llama - except I know they are best friends. The owls (second pic) that hatched at a hawk conservatory were adopted by the park keeper, and became friends with his pet dog.

              polar bear and dogs 

A photographer witnessed a wild polar bear coming upon tethered sled dogs in the wilderness of Canada's Hudson Bay. Instead of devouring the dogs, they played and cuddled. The polar bear returned every night for the week they were there.

             dog and duck

A duck and a house cat were raised together by a family. Reportedly, the duck hates water and hasn't figured out yet that it can fly.

             dog and tiger

The Fernandez family adopted a tiger cub after it had lost its family. It has been raised with the family dog since infancy, and they are inseparable.

            fox 1 mix

            fox 2 mix

This unusual pair have been seen together for over a year in Lake Van in Turkey. They were first spotted by a local fisherman who witnessed them sharing a fish and playing together.


I actually have more - but I do think this post is plenty long enough. Love this topic - hope you do as well. 

However, it does make me wonder why it is SO difficult for humans and nations to get on together.

         Motto for today - Happiness isn't where you find it.

                                   Happiness is where you create it.

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But what a xmas it was !! 

Over the last few years, xmas has been in many different places. They've all been really really special, but this year for a change, it's at our house. 

  house lights 3

Which means, of course, No 85 had to be spruced up, and the xmas train parked at the front under the light tree (look hard, it's on the right)

tree 4  tree 5

First the tree - so many lights packed onto a very small tree - both the tree and I were groaning by the end. Unfortunately only had white white lights, so ended up bluish in pics. LURVE doing chrissy trees, worth every groan.

              tree 3

          The security guard - Harold the Hippo, did a mighty fine job of minding.

       streamers 12

Then the rest of the decos. Malkie got technical advice from Desiree, while he blu-tacked the streamers.

                xmas mix 1

Rest of decs were simply fun. Toilet deco left by a santa fairy from Ipswich, set the mood of the day.

Christmas Day had dawned COOL and cloudy - did you get that - cool and cloudy. Not hot and sunny as per usual. So on a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is boiling hot and 10 is raining - we scored about a 6. Chance of rain, and not too hot. Whacko !!

The tables were set early, the ham in the oven, the salads made, the punch and champagne icy cold. The prawns were coming, the pineapple salsa was made, and the turkey was gobbling in soon. The air of expectation was wonderful, and the loot pile trembled and shimmered.

                       loot 8

The motley crew arrived,( some quite dodgy) settled in with drinks and noise and much laughter.

First round of pressies was followed with first round of food - prawns with hot rolls and pineapple salsa. Yummmm. Noni and Pops both said the blessing - and the feasting began.


Georgia scooped the pool with the first of the games - how did she draw a xmas tree, star on top, pressies under, decorations on -all with the plate balanced on her head? Definitely an artistic streak there.

                  guests jon mix

The loot beckoned again - and yes, Jonathan did want a pair of new slippers - what's more they fitted Thank you, Noni.

                 guests mischa mix

Not so sure about the assorted exotic beers - but then again, maybe Mischa was anticipating the taste (or something)

                 guests malkie mix

And I can guarantee Malkie LOVED his train book, and especially his inflatable toupee - he's promised to wear it regularly.

                guests noni mix

By this time, however, Stewie was getting restive - "Noni Noni Noni, this is fine, but when do we get to the real food ??" So we did - i.e. ate up a storm.

                guests together


More games more pressies even a quiz or two - how do we cope ?? Let me tell you, it was not hard.

               guests mix desiree 

Desiree quite seriously held back from eating the whole chocolate tree - after all there was still dessert still to come.

Dessert ? Groan - who has the room for that ? But at the suggestion of a walk to shake it all down, we all found our dessert tums. 

Was a great day - noisy, rambunctious,nonsensical and over the top in every way - but surely that is the essence of an Aussie Xmas. One day out of reality is totally acceptable in my book. And thank you Santa for my lovely new basket, and specially the massive hamper of goodies from Atlanta, was wonderful. Oh and my new recipe book - complete with naughty words - still chuckling over that one.



How was your xmas day ? I hope it was a day of merriment and fun and nonsense, just like ours. Please tell me about it on - 

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