Sunday, 1 January 2012


I don't know why but for some reason I always expect to feel different on the first day of a new year.

Perhaps it is all the hopes and dreams we hold close to our hearts when there is a new beginning in sight.

It isn't that 2011 was a bad year but it was a fairly hard year for many of us and so completely devastating for others ... I hope for something more beautiful this year.  I certainly hope for more peace.

For me ... I want to spend more time with my wonderful family, take more photos, lose a little weight, improve my health and enjoy my life more.  I need to learn to focus on the good and not the bad ... I have so much good to appreciate. I believe that to some extent we are responsible for our own happiness and I am going to chase it if I have to.

We have had such a great start to the year ... very relaxing (and a lot of tears).

I finished the book I started yesterday "Night Road" by Kristin Hannah - I just couldn't put it down ... it was brilliant, I loved it ... I cried a lot. I found it such an emotionally powerful book, I can't wait to read another of her novels.  Here is a link to Night Road - it is a great read, I totally recommend it.

My wonderful husband cooked a beautiful breakfast ... not great for my diet perhaps but it was most delicious. A lovely first meal for 2012.

Our Vali on New Years morning ... patiently waiting for her sausage breakfast .... yum.

As we don't watch many movies settling down to watch "Red Dog" was a real treat... and yes there were many many more tears.  A beautiful movie and such a wonderful dog - I was really touched by this story. Of course this led to a bit more time Googling "Red Dog" and learning even more about this wonderfully loyal animal.  Mind you being a dog lover helps !!

Now I think I have cried a year full of tears already, I better do something fun this afternoon - see you later.

Saturday, 31 December 2011

So it has been a few years ....

Better late than never I guess ... I had the best intentions when I started out but clearly diary writing wasn't for me given that I only ever wrote these first two entries - I put them here anyway as a reminder of how we felt when we first got this place.  We have been through a lot here and almost all of it special - Michael, Lisa & Vali.


Wednesday 5th June 2002

Well, I have never kept a diary…I guess I never felt there was a need for one.  I am hoping that this day-to-day record of  “The Shack’s” happenings may prove to be interesting reading, not only for us, but our family & our friends.  Good memories for some very special times shared here together…..

It finally came, the day when Sharon (our Solicitor) phoned & said “You can pick up the keys to “The Shack” today.  Jack dropped them in this morning”.

The call came in at 11.20am and all of a sudden I was really excited.  Up to then it was really starting to become a drag – wondering if we were doing ‘the right thing’, having meeting after meeting with Banks, Solicitors, Financial Advisors and then finally waiting for the Directors of Winfield to find us acceptable.  It all took far too long which drove me absolutely crazy, & I in turn drove Michael crazy.

There were some highlights – showing Dad & Mum was good fun.  Dad loved it (although he did say we had our work cut out for us).  Mum was a little quiet at first but after she looked carefully through all of the dirt & grime I think she got a little excited too.

Anyway, I couldn’t wait to ring Michael which I did straight away.  His comment was “lets go – how does 1.00pm sound”?  I told him I would get back to him shortly.  I then went down to Graham and said can I pleeeease finish work today at 1.00 o’clock, he asked why…I told him and all was OK (I wasn’t much good for work after that anyway).  I rang Michael & told him I was finishing at 1.00 and I would meet him at home.

We decided that we shouldn’t have a wasted trip and took a load of furniture with us – one of the reasons being we wanted a little bit of gear up there for when “Kim visited” – very exciting trip…chatted all the way.

Here at last … had a really good look at EVERYTHING.  Very Very dirty, needs heaps of TLC but hey there were no regrets – good decision – plenty of time - very happy!

Jack left a number of little things behind for us, one of which was the “magic rock” - I love it…good vibes.

We decided that we shouldn’t have any wasted trips leaving either so we took the old lounge & ripped up the carpet in both the bedrooms & took them to the Avondale dump on the way home.  Work well done!

We got home at 6.30pm – Can’t wait for the next visit!

Sunday 9th June 2002

Visit number 2 is upon us at last.  This one should be fun as it is Dad & Mum’s 40th wedding anniversary today and we are taking Kim & Anders (who do not yet know about The Shack) to Winfield for a picnic.

We got to Winfield at around midday & as soon as we got there Kim & I needed a toilet trip – hers a pregnant necessity & mine probably just nerves.   Anyway Kim said what a peaceful place it was and how nice it would be to have a weekender here and then started on about upkeep & maintenance on two houses etc. etc. (you know, there are some parts of this purchase that I don’t want to think about).  We went back to the others (who were still standing on the boat ramp) and Kim suggested that we grab the “picnic” table before someone else got it.   Mum looked at me and I whispered something about “when…how do I tell her?   Then – brainwave – I decided after receiving some very strange looks from Kim to tell her that I had forgotten to bring the glasses and that perhaps I should borrow some from one of the residents – the strange looks soon became looks of utter horror.  She refused to accompany me on this little jaunt so I set off with Dad.  You can guess the rest – she sort of worked it out – probably good as I don’t really want her thinking of me as a complete looney!

Of course then we all went completely through the place – looked in every nook & cranny, I showed them all ‘the rock’.  The boys played with the boat for a while. I think everyone enjoyed themselves.  I am sure Anders was more impressed than any of us, he loved it.   I had fun with Ergons digital camera madly clicking here & there.

Lunch was great – we had quiche, crumbed chicken legs, prawns, ham, fresh bread, cold white wine, beer & softdrink, followed by coffee/milo & tim-tams.

We locked up and left at approximately 4.00pm – next trip the hard work will start.

A view of the creek and jetties                                         

The house ... photo taken from the boat ramp