Thursday, December 31, 2009

Day 366 - This one's for Marina

I'm sneaking in an extra post for Marina. This photo was taken at midnight with neighbours. Our host had some flares he kept in his boat and decided to dedicate 3 of them to the new year.

Have a great year, Marina, and I'm hoping to see you share your gorgeous photos with us in some form online. In fact, I'm hoping to read a few more photo blog journeys this year. Thanks for accompanying me on mine.

Day 365 - The conclusion

The final post. The photos are very similar to my first couple of posts a year ago. It's been worth it, despite all my whingeing along the way. As we're getting ready to go to a new year's celebration, it's bucketing, with dramatic thunder and lightning. My little dog is shivering. I'm thinking about all those who have gathered in the city for the fireworks display which promises to be better than ever. Unless the storm prevents it. Waiting for the rain to subside, we're watching a Seinfeld DVD but someone has pressed the wrong episode and we're seeing stick figure Seinfeld characters which is funny because the voices are just the same.

Happy New Year to everyone, and I hope 2010 is a very good year for you. Thankyou for reading, and thankyou especially for commenting.


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Day 364 - The day before

On the second last day of the year we drank pink champagne, left over champagne from a few days ago which I thought we should finish before it lost its bubbles. You may recognise that this photo has been taken by Mr 19. An unremarkable day despite the impending conclusion of this blog tomorrow. Since I've never placed much importance on the whole new year thing, it doesn't worry me that this year will end unremarkably. Life isn't remarkable in the every day, but an overview of the whole year is like a bird's eye view of a landscape with some features more outstanding and colourful than the rest.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Day 363 - Sunny brunch

Beautiful day, just perfect. I spent a good part of it with one of my favourite people over brunch and coffee outdoors in Rathdowne Street, North Carlton. Seems to be a popular spot for pooches too.

I noticed evidence of botanical creativity around all the trees along the strip. Quaint.

I allow myself 2 minutes to dream of being a Rathdowne resident.

Day 362 - Only 3 more days after this! omg!

I think I've gone from thinking 'when will this blog come to its timely end?' to 'omg! there are only a few days left; what will I do without my daily dose of making something up at the end of the day?'

Definitely the best thing about writing threesixtyfivephotos has been the connections it's created. Obviously with Susan Van Gelder and Pam Arvanitakis, who have faithfully commented and supported me, and with a few people who have let me know privately that they've enjoyed reading my posts, or that photos of my home town have cheered them up while they were away, or even that they've followed parts of my journey emotionally.

It's been much more than the superficial little experiment it stated out as. And I have the chronological and photographic record of this year.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Day 361 - 60 years of our parish

Today our parish celebrated 60 years since its founding. Our bishop, also Metropolitan of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, served along with many priests and deacons. The choir was fuller than usual (I think 40 voices according to our conductor) since we are also hosting the annual Youth Convention.

My grandfather was one of the first church wardens of the Melbourne Orthodox church, giving most of his time and supporting the bishop with various issues within Australian parishes. He died of cancer at the age of 45. Some of his close friends, including those who came over on the same ship as he did, still play a valuable part in the life of the parish, giving up much of their time to help things run smoothly. This is a photo of the wife of one of my grandfather's best friends, who is still actively involved in the parish despite illness.

My husband's relatives who live in Russia send photos and write warm, interesting emails. I sometimes wonder what my life would have been like if my family hadn't been forced to leave their country. This recent photo is from St Petersburg - a contrast to our own weather.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Day 360 - Full circle

Now I'm really in relaxion mode. I'm beginning to feel the way I did when I started this blog. Spent the day browsing through illustration blogs internally oohing and ahhing (yes it does so have two h's) over wonderful, wonderful book illustations. This blog has a blog list worth investigating if you love illustrations and children's books which combine great design, whimsy and atmosphere. Most of my time has been spent on Le figure dei libri, and I've been posting video links onto Facebook and my art wiki.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Day 359 - The day after - Christmas for most people.

Today is the absence of cooking and cleaning; just chilling.

The dog does what we do.

The possum has returned.

Meanwhile, we still have a while to go until our Christmas. Now to try and focus a little more and indulge less.

Day 358 - Christmas Eve

My post is late following a late night. Here are the pictures of the German Lutheran church.

It was difficult driving to the church through the pelting rain which made visibility almost impossible. Some drivers stopped on the side of the road. Safe and dry in the beautiful church built in the nineteenth century, we filled an entire row/pew, and tried our best to sing the German hymns which are always pitched very high. These pictures were taken by Mr 19 and you can see the rest of them in his photostream once they're uploaded.

At home, good food, pink champagne, animated conversations, a flurry of paper ripping and ribbons, excited children, groaning dessert table, happy farewells and well wishes at the door. Groggily collecting the debris and restoring order. Falling into bed happy, relieved and grateful.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Day 357 - Mango dessert

Preparation for Christmas eve has included a tiramisu-style mango dessert. My grandmother was Lutheran and so our family tradition is to attend the Christmas eve German service at the Lutheran church in the city (across the road from St Patrick's), and then come back to a meal and the exchanging of gifts around the tree. I've always loved the atmosphere inside the little bluestone church. A very tall Christmas tree stands in the altar, decorated tastefully with large red balls, straw stars, silver 'rain' and white lights. Each white-washed, leadlight window ledge has fir branches and a simple white candle. The cathedral ceiling is lined with dark wood.

We sing carols in German. Since my husband and boys don't speak German, I give them a quick lesson on how to pronounce the vowels and consonants on the way to the church.

Early in January we celebrate Christmas again!!

I wish you all a peaceful and happy Christmas wherever you are.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Day 356 - A little grumpy

No sleep, sinus headache; grumpy. Well, not the whole day.

Still decorating and wishing my artistic eye was more artistic.

Just now, after hearing rushing of water, we looked out beyond our backyard and saw an enormous gush of water. A water main must have burst. I wonder how long before it is stopped. Wishing I could catch it somehow and water my thirsty garden.

Just listening to a news update (9 pm) and surprised to hear that someone vandalised the Myer Christmas windows. Why?

Monday, December 21, 2009

Day 355 - Decorating

This is the solution to our two Christmas trees issue. In the last few years we've been bringing in two potted trees to decorate, so that we have one in our dining room and one in the room in which we spend most of our time. The trees have grown too large to just casually carry in and out, and they're not looking too good after the hot summers, so we settled for a modern arrangement instead in one of the rooms.

I think this is the first day I've really felt relaxed since the holidays began. It had a lot to do with very good company.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Day 354 - Wrapped up

Paper rolls all over the table. Sticky tape, ribbons all-sorts, scissors, gift cards, strings of shiny red beads. Preparation for Christmas. Even though I complain about having two Christmases, I suppose I like having one for the magic and materialism, and the other for more spiritual preparation.

Thanks to Mr 19 for the photo.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Day 353 - Music marathon

And there was much singing and playing of the piano. And it was loud and they enjoyed it. I was wrapping presents at the time. So glad not to live in a silent house.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Day 352 - Still disjointed

Still feeling disjointed, running errands here, there and everywhere. Following the Christmas break routine. My poor little dog was transformed from a fat furball to a scrawny, fragile-looking animal with bones.

No photo was taken today, although I considered revealing my Christmas wrap mess which is taking over a table in the kitchen (maybe I need a gift-wrapping room like Niles), but I might do that tomorrow.

Meanwhile, I asked Mr 19 to take a photo for me during a night walk along The Boulevarde (la di da), Ivanhoe, an annual Christmas lights display.

Sorry for the late post.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Day 351 - Rain, humidity, more rain and a cool change

Ok, so soon I'll be having my own weather segment. That's on top of the food segment. Soon I'll be reading your horoscope and giving you gardening tips.
Well, I was happy that we had so much rain - not pouring rain but lovely consistent rain over several hours, drenching everything, as far as I could see. Our dog, our little black and white mop, spent the first half of the day shivering and shaking in a cartoon-like manner, and the second sleeping. I think I'm slowing down; I wasn't very productive today, although I did buy a new letter box. Looking forward to receiving large envelopes and parcels which aren't wet or ripped.

I really should remember to bring in these Moroccan lamps when it's about to rain.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Day 350 - A hot day

What can you do on a very hot day? Close all the blinds, avail yourself of ice-cold drinks, and find something you like doing.

No heavy duty cooking on hot days either. No baking, that's for sure.

Day 349 - More biscuits, too many containers and not enough space

I've been quoted as saying 'you can never have enough biscuits', but I think I may have to add to that very true maxim the words 'you can never have enough containers' and following that 'enough space to put the biscuits and containers'. For truly, I have discovered the chagrin which follows when too many biscuits and too many containers lack the corresponding amount of storage space.
After choir practice later in the evening, I snapped the church but the camera has lied; it looks like mid-afternoon.

What it really looked like was this.

I'm following the predictable pattern for me in the first week of holidays - a feeling that I have to fix all those things hanging over my head during school term when my time is limited. This will pass, and then I'll assume a slug-like disposition which will continue until the last five or so days before school resumes, when I'll suddenly realise there are so many wonderful things to do and not enough time to do them all before the start of the school year. I need help.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Day 348 - Christmas baking

First day of holidays and after a somewhat uninspiring trek through one of those soulless shopping towns (as they're strangely called), in search of adolescent gear, I made a start on the Christmas biscuits. The first batch was white chocolate and macadamia, and I also made dark chocolate and ginger which were slightly disappointing on account of the ginger flavour disappearing, and also they were slightly burnt. Oh well, more tomorrow.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Day 347 - No photo

No photo today. I tried, I really did, but they were even more blurry than this one. Mr 19 and I just took a photo of each other taking photos. Not sure about the grammar of the last sentence. I'm really looking forward to the end of this blog. My life has probably run its course in terms of novelty. Here's Mr 19's blog post and photo.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Day 346 - First Birthday

Such a lovely Saturday. In the afternoon we had an enjoyable time at Sophie's first birthday. The table was set by Sophie's almost 3 year old brother; he did a great job. This little boy was busy all day, and finished the afternoon by displaying his conducting skills, complete with podium, music stand and baton.

Earlier a monthly market at the Botanical Gardens enticed us to breakfast and a leisurely stroll.
The Children's Garden is delightful.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Day 345 - Last day of school

The layers of the year have peeled away consistently, and we're almost at the end. The last day of school for the year ended with a very enjoyable lunch overlooking a vineyard. Catching up with staff members I barely see throughout the year, I wondered if it would be too hard to organise more frequent social functions which enabled conversations.

Day 344 - No laptop

No laptop today. It was my turn to swap my old laptop for a newer 2 year old tablet. Hence the absence of a timely post.
I snapped a random card bluetacked to my wall. An old card my sister made.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Day 343 - Holidays for some

Some of us are already on holidays and others are not. Mr 16 is off and says he doesn't have enough hours in the day. He's so immersed in his compositions, time flies for him. For us at work it's dragging now with 2 more days to go. Still, tomorrow we're having a morning tea in the library for the whole staff, and people will be able to buy books from Dymocks, as well as book-related gifts from Readers' Niche.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Day 342 - Hair appointment

On my way to the hairdresser today, I stopped at Ikea. This little dinner party caught my eye. The guests seem to be having a great time, especially the hippos.

The graffiti was spied in a side street. Here's the close-up and you can also see the rest of the wall here.

I'm fascinated by the combination of retail and residential in the inner city. This residence is above the shops in Gertrude Street, Fitzroy. It would be a nice change not to live in the suburbs.