my life in the land down under


End of an Era

Today (Tuesday) I handed in my resignation for a voluntary position I’ve held for over 11 years.

I’ll probably keep going through the motions for a few weeks or months, but only to get things ready to hand over to whoever will be my successor. At this stage I’m not sure who or when that will be.

This position has been a large part of my ‘identity’ within the photographic group I belong to, and its been a time-consuming and sometimes challenging (though mostly enjoyable) position. It’s almost as though I’m losing a part of myself, so I feel a bit sad and strange at the moment. It really does feel like the end of an era!

It was inevitable that I would resign at some stage, but it’s come more quickly than I expected. Although ultimately it’s been my choice, the catalyst was some strong public criticism from one individual, followed by an apparent lack of support from others involved in running the group.

It always surprises me when another person’s perception of who I am, and my motives, is so different to who I think I am, and how I come across to others.

My husband got a cross look when he suggested that now I’m not filling this role any more, I’ll get more housework done. He says he was joking. Ggrrr! He also suggested a few other (nicer) things I might get done, which included blogging, quilting and even getting into the darkroom again! 🙂

However those things might be a little while away, as I also have to put a work portfolio together within the next month.

I’ll be posting this later in the week, so the news of my resignation has a little time to filter through the ranks first.



Friday Focus: From the Archives

Several years ago, after much browsing of online auction sites, I acquired my first TLR – Twin Lens Reflex camera.

It was a Yashica LM. Supposedly in working order… and it was, kind of. Eventually I put a film through it and had problems. Either it wouldn’t wind on between shots – or after winding on, the shutter wouldn’t fire. A bit of jiggling and it would come right, but it was frustrating. I finished the film, and was pleased with the sharpness and shallow depth of field of the resulting images.

Then the camera went into storage for a long time (along with the rest of the collection) while I was busy getting married, moving house, renovating, getting used to being a wife and step-mum, working part-time etc etc…

I finally pulled it out of the display cupboard a few weeks ago, and took it to our local camera repair specialist. Sadly he couldn’t fix the shutter-jamming problem without pulling the camera apart and risking major cosmetic damage, so we decided it would have to go back into the cupboard as a ‘display-only’ model. 😦

The Camera:

Yashica LM – front view

Side view with viewfinder open

View of the other side

Right side showing winder

Left side showing dial for setting distance, aperture etc

The Stats:

It’s late at night here and I really wanted to get this up on Friday (at least while it’s still Friday in other parts of the world), so I didn’t get the stats done. If you’re interested let me know, otherwise I’ll get round to posting them when I can.

The Photos:

I’m hoping to locate the negatives soon and scan some more frames, as this is all I have so far.

Dahlias in my parent’s garden – this was obviously taken in the summer


Children in the back yard – they have grown up a lot since this photo was taken!

Click on the links below for my previous posts on vintage cameras:

Friday Focus: Introduction

Friday Focus: Empire Scout

Friday Focus: Diana

Friday Focus: Agfa Isoly


About You

There would be no point writing a blog if no-one read it; it would be like writing a journal and locking it away so no-one could ever see it. (ok, maybe sometimes that’s a good thing!)

I came across a great idea recently (if I find the blog concerned I’ll give credit). The author had a page titled ‘About Me’ and another titled ‘About You’, or ‘my story’ and ‘your story’. I would love to get to know followers of my blog a bit better, so I’ve decided to set up an ‘About You’ page.

Please visit and let me know a bit about yourself? Thanks!


In An Ideal World

In an ideal world, I would have unlimited time (and money) to do everything I wanted to do.

I would be perfectly creative – quilt seams would never have to be undone and re-stitched. Quilts would come together quickly and beautifully.

Photographs would turn out exactly the way I’d envisioned them, with no need to use a polarizing filter (!). My photographs would be amazing and people would want to buy them, without trying to beat my prices down.

I would know how to do things instinctively, without having to learn them and making lots of mistakes along the way.

There would be no housework or other chores to be done – the house would clean and tidy itself (or never get dirty). Visitors would always take their shoes off at the door without being asked. The bed would never need making.

There would be no need to go grocery shopping. Delicious meals would appear miraculously on the table every night (my husband would probably disagree with this as he likes shopping and cooking!).

We could eat what we wanted without having to worry about our weight or the dentist bills. Dishes would never need washing.

My cup of tea would never get cold because I made it then got busy doing something else.

I wouldn’t break things, lose them, or forget where I put them.

Piles of paper wouldn’t build up on flat surfaces, but instead sort and file themselves. There would be no bills to pay.

The cat would never miss the dirtbox; in fact he would always go outside so there was never a need to empty the box.

I would never have to run to get the clothes off the washing line because it suddenly started raining, when five minutes beforehand the sun was shining.

No weeds would grow in the garden. In fact, we could have the garden landscaped beautifully at no cost. The neighbours would offer to put up a new fence on the boundary at their expense. The same neighbours would never be noisy when I was trying to sleep after a night shift. Better still, there would be no night shifts.

The traffic lights would always be on green when I was running late.

I could have all the sleep I wanted without feeling guilty, and always wake feeling refreshed.

I would be energetic and highly-motivated, and never be in a bad mood, sad or irritable.

I could say whatever I liked in my blog, honestly sharing my thoughts.  I could be real and honestly share what was on my heart, without fear of offending anyone or bringing ridicule on myself.

Everyone would like, understand and appreciate me (or, if there were difficult people I wouldn’t have to deal with them). There would be no misunderstandings, arguments, frustration, resentment or rejection. I would like myself.

Family relationships (of all kinds) would be loving, supportive and respectful.

We would win the lottery  – without having to buy a ticket. Or, we would have a great income without having to work (except if we wanted to).

We could follow our dreams; pay off the mortgage, keep the house and buy a motorhome, travel…

On a more serious note, there would be no child abuse; car accidents; disasters such as earthquakes and tsunamis; cancer; or children dying of starvation. 😦

I’ve just scratched the surface of what my ideal world might look like. Many of the above comments are a bit tongue-in-cheek, but who hasn’t dreamed of a world where everything was right, easy and beautiful. Especially when going through difficult times – and I know the difficulties I find myself facing are comparatively small. Most things I’ve mentioned are only minor annoyances, with a few majors thrown in for good measure. I’m sure everyone could add to this list.


The perfect world might also be very boring. Where would we be without challenges? What would I talk (or write) about?

I guess the difficulties and struggles (both minor and major) are intended to make me grow into a better person – and I could certainly do with being more patient, forgiving and humble at times. Not to mention disciplined and organised. And happy!

I’ll keep working on it. 🙂

If you are struggling through life at the moment, what helps you cope with it? What would your ideal world look like?


Talking When I Should Be Working

Over the last couple of days I’ve discovered how exciting it is to become part of the blogging (in particular, quilting) online community.

I’ve started taking more time to like, comment and follow other people’s blogs that interest me. There are some great blogs out there – creative, inspirational, funny…

People have been embarrassingly complimentary about my quilting and writing efforts (me – talented? are you serious?). One of them even invited me to join a circle of appreciation for the rest of the month (thanks Marsha Lee!). A great idea, but unfortunately not something I can do justice to at the moment.

I put my name into the draw for a quilting book giveaway, and signed up for a ‘newbie’ fabric swap for postage stamp quilts on the Curious Quilter here. I had never heard of those (PSQ’s) before, so the learning curve continues!

Now I’m getting myself into trouble as I take time to comment and respond to comments on my own and other’s blogs. I’m ‘talking’ instead of working. There are other things I should be doing. And my husband is feeling left out! Oops!

Back to work… 🙂