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Friday, February 28, 2020

Stories of Hope

Stories of Hope

I'm delighted to announce that Stories of Hope is now available on various digital platforms. All profits will go to the Red Cross and WWF Australia for bush fire relief. There's a huge range of stories and genres!

I have one story in this anthology (which I, along with all the other authors, donated as a contribution to charity). I've read about one-third of it and a lot of it is quite high fantasy, but there's a wide range of styles ad genres. Mine is not high fantasy, more alternative history (in the future - is that a thing?) It's a good read.

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Doesn't Time Fly!!

So ... it might be over four years since I blogged here. How did that happen!! I suppose I have been more active on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (you'll find me there by searching Judy Edmonds, or in the case of Twitter, @AuntAdaDoom1

What's been happening? I know have a first class Honours Degree in Literary Studies and Creative Writing. (Up yours to Melbourne University who told me I was useless at English in 1979. But thanks, though, because you pushed me into a History degree which is an excellent addition to my current life).

I am currently researching material for an urban fantasy novel set in Regency London (NOT influenced by Georgette Heyer!). But that's what the writing blog is for.

I'm going to keep this as a personal blog and go back to posting pictures of dogs, craft and food. (My interests have not changed in this regard).

Edited to add:  I obviously can't count. I appear to have already introduced Cleo to the world and got the year wrong! Anyway, enjoy the photos!!

Three months after my last blog post we had to say a very sad goodbye to the goodest dog in the world, Sirius. It was heartbreaking. We loved her every moment of the 14 1/2 years she spent with us (even the time she ate the jumper I had just finished knitting in expensive hand-dyed 4 ply wool!) But the time came to be kinder to her than to us.

A few months later, actually on the day of the Federal Election in 2016, we adopted a 'twelve month old Whippet Cross' from a delightful, no-kill pet shelter in the country. She walked beautifully on a lead and was exactly what we'd been looking for.  The immaculate winged eyeliner around her eyes meant that she had to be called Nefertiti or Cleopatra, and you can guess which one is slightly less silly to shout out loud in a dog park.

On the long drive home I noticed that she had inflamed gums. This isn't unusual in rescue dogs (she'd been rescued from a pound near the Murray) so I wasn't too worried at first, thinking that good dental care and nutrition was all she needed. Then I noticed that she didn't have enough teeth. Some frantic Googling (George was driving), checking out when a dog's adult teeth came through, I realised that she was probably about six months old. This was only a worry because she was at the uppermost of the size of dog we had wanted and we were not sure how much she would grow. However, Sirius had only been six months old when we adopted her, and she had reached her adult size.

After a peaceful long ride home, our first new thing with Cleo was to take her to a polling station and share a Democracy Sausage with her. She met some dogs. She behaved herself. Then it was off to the vet for a thorough check up. The shelter had had her spayed and vaccinated but we always like our own vets to check a new dog over. She'd only been vaccinated six days previously and unfortunately had kennel cough, which has a longer incubation period than that. I learned how to administer Benedryl via syringe to a dog with very large teeth. They also guessed she was five months old, Greyhound rather than Whippet, and likely to double in size.

Um, they were right. The photos in this post are of her first few weeks with us, She did double in size, as you will see in later posts. I can't walk her because she likes to RUN and is incredibly strong. I had a doggy DNA test done on her to check. Approximately 45% Greyhound, 25% Rhodesian Ridgeback, 5% Kelpie, 5% German Shepherd, and 20% Unknown. We're still not quite sure what that means.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

52 Weeks, 50 Items

I started my last blog post with this paragraph:

I've spent the year studying my brains out, and Facebooking rather than blogging. But I have realised, now that hectic year is over, that I have been doing things I have been proud of all year, that could be recorded more systematically. Hence the fresh start - 52 Weeks, 50 Things. I'm going to post things that I accomplish that I am proud of. It may include items made, mended, repurposed, altered to fit, or even written. This is actually the start of Week Three of my plan, but that's the next post.

It's now Week 5. I probably won't actually finish anything this week, as although I have knitted most of one sock, I'm in Adelaide for a few days now to attend a friend's wedding, and it's unlikely that I will complete the pair!


Week 1, Item 1

I so rarely get my act together to actually mend something that for the purposes of this next year, mending is going to count. These were brand new jeans, torn when George rescued my disintegrating suitcase a couple of months ago as it fell apart on the way home from - actually, Adelaide. That was a mid-semester break. Now I'm here for a wedding. I love Adelaide but I must admit that I don't normally visit quite so frequently! So I had a good go at 'darning' these jeans. I must say I am moderately proud of the result. I never darn, for a start. And it is actually damn near invisible - I lightening the photo so that you can see the stitching, but in real life both cloth and thread are a very deep, dark black.

Item 2, Week 2

A nightshirt for George. Embarrassingly, despite having measured him carefully, I then went and carelessly cut out the largest size, which is at least one size too big. I had also carefully measured the extra needed to add to the pattern to turn it from a Tshirt to a nightshirt - and then carelessly made it much too long. It is however comfortable. It also was the first time I'd made a whole thing on my sewing machine in about nine months. It also reminded me that I hate, hate sewing jersey. Yes, I used a ballpoint needle. And an appropriate stitch. And I still hated doing it. And yes, the photo is blurry. Everything hates me, too :)

Week 3, Item 3

Socks for George. Patonyle, the usual generic toeup pattern that I generally use. He loves them. They were pleasant to knit.

Week 4, Item 4

Tubular socks knitted in Woolmeise sock wool. Boring, boring boring. For someone who is very sensitive about how things feel on his feet, therefore made tubular to avoid arguments about size - because no size is ever 'right' for him.

I suspect by the end of Week 6 I may have finished the socks I am currently working on. But then production of things needs to speed up as I have some small Christmas things to knit.

And I intend to make myself some summer dresses. All of the above have been for other people, which is fun, but I have so much fabric and a renewed desire to sew.

For the next few days, however, I intend to enjoy Adelaide and the wedding of my friend. And eat and drink till I burst.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

A Fresh Start and a Fond Goodbye

I've spent the year studying my brains out, and Facebooking rather than blogging. But I have realised, now that hectic year is over, that I have been doing things I have been proud of all year, that could be recorded more systematically. Hence the fresh start - 52 Weeks, 50 Things. I'm going to post things that I accomplish that I am proud of. It may include items made, mended, repurposed, altered to fit, or even written. This is actually the start of Week Three of my plan, but that's the next post.

This post is to say a heartfell farewell to our beloved Sirius, who died in April. We loved you to bits for every moment of the 14 1/2 of your 15 years that we were lucky enough to live with you. I hope you've found room on Nana's couch ๐Ÿ’–๐Ÿ’–๐Ÿ’–

And in May we welcomed Cleopatra into our lives. We were tempted by the description of the 12 month old Whippet Cross posted by the shelter, so schlepped off to Woodend to rescue her. On the way home I noticed that she had inflamed gums, which I initially put down to her life before being sprung from the Kerang pound. Until I Googled the ages of puppy tooth eruption, and realised that she was NOT 12 months old. She continued to grow over the next two months, was largely not house-trained, and was clearly a puppy.

I succumbed to curiosity and had a DNA test done on her. She is about 45% Greyhound, about 24% Rhodesian Ridgeback, about 5% each German Shepherd and Kelpie, and the remainder untraceable.
We've also found out from official paperwork that she was five months old when we got her. George had insisted that we get a young adult female dog, not too big, but I wanted a greyhound. He said they were too big. Well, she's female - one out of three's not bad! An actual greyhound might well have been quieter and less boisterous!

BUT she is totally adorable!!

She eats everything, has turned the back garden into a scale model of the Somme, and is stronger than me. But she's also wonderfully funny ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜and we love her!

Monday, January 04, 2016


No, I'm not even going to bother with excuses this time. I just haven't felt like blog writing for several months.

I've just started an upcycling project. Years ago I bought a denim trench coat with the intention of embellishing it in some way. I've had various ideas but none that ever really jelled. I've been reading about the Japanese art of boro and have been hankering to give it a go, so finally decided to try it on the trench coat. I have cut up scraps of denim left over from other projects, or from worn out clothes, into rough rectangles and I am sewing them around the bottom edge of the coat with running stitch. I don't really know what it will look like, but it's worth a go! The only problem so far is that I am sewing on the front of the coat where I have to go through two layers of denim plus the patch, because of the facing, and it's hurting my wrist a bit. Most of the patches will only go through one coat layer, however, so should be easier. Herewith some progress pictures:

It will a slow project, obviously, which suits me fine - it can easily be done in front of the television.

Dressmaking remained largely in my imagination during 2015, sadly. I did finally finish this dress - I drafted this pattern myself and the cotton turns out to be a little too robust for the style. It makes a very comfortable and cool dress to wear at home on hot days. I would only wear it out of the house with something under it (leggings? jeans?) and I guess that with a few more washes, the quilting cotton will soften and drape a bit better and get that lovely patina that quilting cotton gets after it's been washed quite a few times. I am halfwayish through a reversible dress - one side green, one side purple - so hopefully at least some progress pictures will happen soon.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

A Tentative Foray into Poetry

Apologies for what is largely a repost, but I wanted to add something to this collection of images and it seemed best to repeat the information about the sculpture.

George and I spent a week in northern NSW and southern Queensland over Easter. Among other things, I was hugely taken with a sculpture in Brisbane called Forme del Mito by Arnaldo Pomodoro. It tells the  story of Agamemmon from Ancient Greece. Fabricated in cast bronze each piece has its own identity. ‘The Prophet’ Cassandra, ‘The Machine’ Aegisthus, ‘Ambition’ Clytesmnestra and ‘Power’ Agamemnon King of Mycenea.  I think it was commissioned for the World Expo that was held in Brisbane in 1988. 

It was, presumably, inspired by the gold death mask of Agamemnon, which is displayed in Athens after being found at Mycenae:

Last semester I studied the poetry of the early and middle twentieth century - mostly European, with some American and a very small amount of Australian poetry (the omission of Australian poetry was essentially because of the very late adoption of modernity by Australian poets, compared with the rest of the world). During the course of this (very interesting) subject we had to write poetry as well. This is a bit of an experiment - it will be the first time I have posted any of my creative writing in this blog. One of my poems was inspired by this sculpture. The style owes much to the Russian futurist poet Vladimir Mayakovsky.

Here's a couple of pictures of the sculpture:

It’s three o’clock
                should you be asleep?
Broken stars collide with bats
                so much for sonar
Fruit bats don’t need satellites
                actually they do

No, not clouds
                not rain
                                not fog
                                                not plagues
The Milky Way has vanished
That can’t be good

What is the morning?
                the colour of twelve
                                the hunter’s stew
The death mask four ways in a Brisbane square

The dog at the door and
                the wolf at the fold
And the colour of twelve
                and the water-rat drowning

Where can you get a drink, I’m hot

C Judy Edmonds 2015

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

The Adventures of Bobby and MoMo - Fiji

It became necessary for George and I to visit Fiji for a week. He was working a lot of the time, so Bobby and MoMo came along too, to keep me company where necessary. They thoroughly enjoyed the luxurious Westin Hotel on Denauru Island. The beds were very comfortable.

We visited the Marina, had lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe - and Bobby got a bit excited about the cocktail menu. Don't worry, we all drank iced water. I rarely go to a Hard Rock Cafe, though now I have been to one in America (cannot remember where), Paris and now Fiji. Three in 25 years is probably allowed.

Later, we stopped for a refreshing beer. I rarely drink beer, but Fiji beer suited the Fiji weather (mid to high twenties, pleasant breezes) so I drink more beer in that week than I do in a whole summer. It wasn't very strong. Bobby tried to steal mine, but I resisted,

 On Denauru Island there is a cute shuttle bus for tourists called the Bula Bus, for which you pay F$7 for a day ticket and can travel as much as you like. We used it to travel between the hotel and the Marina, and back. It has a thatched roof and is a bit of a tourist gimick, but quite fun and useful. MoMo and Bobby were a little disconcerted about it though, sitting on long benches with no windows.

They were all worn out when we got back to the hotel room. Can't blame them, so were we!

 At breakfast every morning I was given a hibiscus. I tried wearing it once and George laughed at me, so I let MoMo have them. They looked better on him anyway.

 And then good old Bobby got hold of it. Made a tasty snack after the photo op, I believe.

Now here, for once, is a genuine photo of Bobby with a bottle of water! I must admit I had always assumed Fiji Water was just a marketing lurk, but it turns out it actually is bottled in Fiji.

Finally it was time to leave. Bobby and MoMo relaxed for one last time under a vase of tropical flowers before we left for the airport, slightly tanned and having had a great time.