Patra's Other Place

I started out with Patra's Place, primarily dedicated to my linen collection and stitching projects. But I kept getting side-tracked, so I decided to create Patra's Other Place for anything not related to embroidery topics. So you now have a choice. If you are interested in me, read this. If you only want to see my linen and stitching, visit Patra's (original) Place! (Please note that by clicking on any of the photos, they will be enlarged to fill your computer screen.)

My Photo
Location: Melbourne, Vic., Australia

I am married to Ken. We have no children except a cat and a collection of Australian parrots, finches, canaries and a dozen hens.

Monday, April 30, 2007

What is under the quilt on our bed?

When we decided to go to bed last night, we discovered a largish lump in the bed, under the quilt. I lifted up one corner...


Topsy had beaten us to bed!

Television Troubles..

While I was out enjoying myself on Sunday, Ken was cursing the day he got involved with home theatre tv! He'd gone out and bought a small (but expensive, no doubt) item to improve some aspect of the t.v., but when he plugged everything back in and turned it all on to test it, he couldn't get laser disks to play in colour. I said brightly, "Well, some movies look just as good in black and white anyway" and was rewarded with a scowl...

Fun Day Out with Blogger Friends!

Sharon and I met up with Miss Eagle at 10 am on Sunday morning. We spent an hour at a terrific craft shop/warehouse - all sorts of goodies to drool over, followed by coffee while we got to know each other. We moved on to the Ferntree Gully Sunday Market, which was a bit of a non-event due to the rain, but then we walked to one of Miss Eagle's favourite opshops and we each came away with some goodies! Here is Sharon coming out the door holding a spice rack for which she has another purpose in mind. If you have visited Miss Eagle's blog in the past, you might recognise the wall - she posted some photos on her blog a while ago. But I couldn't resist taking a pic of this section for myself - it really is beautifully painted. Much better than the run of the mill graffiti that is usually on brick walls around the suburbs...

Op shop goodies for my Blog Friends.

I found some lace for Pam

..and some ties for Barb.

The Trad Pad.

We ended up having lunch at Miss Eagle's home, and what a lovely home she has! She shares it with her daughter, and they have decorated it in Shabby Chic style. I took a heap of photos, but I won't post them here unless Miss Eagle gives me her permission to do so. Lee-Ann was hoping to join us for the day, but had another commitment, so Miss Eagle phoned her while we were still there, and we left a crazy long message on the answering machine, just for fun! When I got home, Ken said Lee-Ann had phoned already, asking what it was all about, so I called her and explained. She is determined not to miss our next Op Shop Day Out!

Birthday stash

I forgot to download this photo from my camera. It shows most of my birthday gifts, including the special pan for poffertjes. I have three different recipes now, including a translation of the recipe that came with the pan - thank you Ashleigh!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Anzac Day.

Ken and I are always deeply affected on Anzac Day. We always watch The March on t.v. all the way through to the ceremony at the Shrine, and then we usually watch most of the documentaries and/or movies relating to that time in our history. Neither of us had family members who died (or were even in the services) during any wars in the past century, but we still have the greatest respect for those who sacrificed their lives for Australia. And I don't mean those who died on the battlefields. I have seen enough elderly men and women in nursing homes who have suffered for the rest of their lives, physically and emotionally, from the effects of one or the other of the two World Wars. For anyone overseas reading this post, who doesn't know about our Anzac Day, go to this link:
Australian War Memorial - Anzac Day.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Topsy tonight, and my birthday pressies.

Cop those eyes - she looks like something from that old horror movie "Village Of The Damned" where the kids had weird eyes!
Apart from the perfect day I had on Sunday, I also received some beaut gifts. They are all sitting on the dining room table, but everytime I go to take a picture, I get sidetracked with something else. So for my friends who will be asking if I don't say anything, here is what I received:
Poffertjes Pan, necklace, doiley, soap, body creme, three bottles of Sherry, Satsuma vase with a peacock, bunch of orchids, Elvis doll (the kind you stick inside your car window), Angus & Robertson gift voucher, book mark, Tattslotto scratchie, and $20 cash. I was hoping someone would give me the new Melways street directory, but as they didn't, the A & R gift voucher will be going toward it!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Birthday Breakfast at Chateau Yering.

For my birthday this year, we decided to go to the Chateau Yering for breakfast, and invited a few friends and family members. They were grumbling about getting up at 6.30 am on a Sunday morning! But everyone arrived on time at 8 am, and thoroughly enjoyed themselves. We ordered a cooked breakfast, then nibbled our way through assorted foods including smoked salmon, muffins, Danish pastries, fresh fruit, cereal, yoghurt, with fresh juice, tea or coffee. The breakfast smorgasbord was closed at 10.30 am, and we escaped with leftover Danish pastries that would otherwise have been thrown out (ugh, I hate that kind of waste).

The entrance to the Chateau and gardens, from the car park. Sorry the photo is so dark, but as you can see, the sun was right in my face.

This is the historic homestead which has been turned into a hotel/restaurant. The interior is absolutely stunning.

Ken took this photo with me (on the right) looking pleased after opening my lovely presents. Look at the view of the gardens from the window!

Ain't love grand! Ken wasn't too pleased about this photo of himself, but he's gotten used to me telling him he is now a public face - LOL!

We had to walk off all that food!

The grounds and garden surrounding the homestead are truly spectacular, despite the drought conditions. Most of the trees are Old World, brought to Australia more than 100 years ago, and planted by homesick Englishmen and women. Come with me on our walk...

Ken was glad to sit down for a minute, even on a stone seat.

Wish this was my place!

Beautiful little statues and a lily pond.

This young man with hat in hand and bowed head, looks too shy to make eye contact with the lady on the other side of the path.

She looks the other way - is she shy as well?

This plaque on the ground between the statues reads:
The kiss of the sun for pardon
The song of the birds for mirth
You are nearer God's heart in a garden
Than anywhere else on earth.

On the way home...

We stopped at Sugar Loaf Dam to see what the water level was. It looked like a puddle, in comparison to what it should be.

You can see the dark area at the top of the weir wall where the water line used to be (half way up the picture on the right hand side)

My Saturday.

Ken and I had Things To Do in the city of Melbourne yesterday. It was such a lovely sunny day I decided to take my camera and 'do a Miss Eagle' - take photos at random of things that catch my eye!
While Ken was having his hair cut,

in one of Melbourne's lovely old historic lanes - Hardware Street,

I was out and about, taking pictures of interesting things like this doorway at the top of one of the old buildings there:

It was such a lovely day I was snap-happy!

Tall Buildings: a Wow factor of a city.

And another..

Don't even ASK!! I have absolutely no idea what this is supposed to be, or why it is on the corner of a city block.

Graffiti - Art or Rubbish?

One of Melbourne's trams: this is the City Circle tram which is free to ride, and takes passengers around the perimeter of the city, so they can hop off wherever they need to.

Ken commented on this little Welsh Church tucked in among the tall buildings.

A doorway in an old building.

We strolled along Elizabeth Street.

Elizabeth Street in the city of Melbourne has long been The Place to go if you want to see motorcycles and their riders. They are parked on the kerb and on the footpath as far as the eye can see.

They even ride on the footpath for short distances, without being booked by the police! People just step to one side - everyone is used to it in this section of Elizabeth Street.

A couple of tourists on their Harley touring bike. May as well get a car when the bike is this big!

Love me, love my Bike.

....and looked at bikes...

Wishful thinking, Ken.

Dream on, Gina.

One of my favourite shops in the City.

Our final stop was here, where Ken bought my birthday gift - a pan to cook Dutch pancakes in!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Easter has come and gone for another year.

Time flies when you're having fun, so they say. Well, you could say we had fun over Easter, but we are paying for it now! We both wanted to simply veg. out over the four days, but fate had other plans. I have already written about Good Friday and Easter Saturday. On Sunday, Ken collected his Mum and brought her to our place for lunch. After we'd eaten, we decided to go for a drive somewhere, as it was such a perfect day to be out and about. We ended up at the Maroondah Reservoir, about 50 minutes drive from here. MIL thoroughly enjoyed sitting in a shady spot, watching people enjoying themselves while Ken and I went for a short walk. We got back home about 5 pm, and Ken took his Mum home. It was a lot of driving for him, but he didn't mind.

We were looking forward to Monday, our last day off work, and we had made up our minds not to go ANYwhere. Famous last words....Ken phoned a mate, and after talking for a few minutes, he turned to me and said "How about we drop in on F. and C.?" I sighed...not that I didn't want to see our friends, but that was the end of my stitching afternoon. Ah well, didn't matter. We had a very enjoyable afternoon, and I can stitch any time, so....
The picture above is of our Easter Stash. From the left, a half eaten bunny from one of my home care clients, two dark chocolate bunnies from MIL (one for each of us), Ken's Chocolatier egg for me, and a Darrell Lea dark choc. Bilby from me to Ken.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Shopping with a reluctant husband.

Ken wanted to go shopping on his own today, but it was such a nice day, and I didn't have anything better to do, so I persuaded him to take me with him. He was a bit put out because one of his messages was to go to a specialist chocolate shop in another suburb to buy an Easter egg for me! I promised I would sit in the car and wait while he did that, but I didn't - I went for a walk instead and found a nice coffee shop where we had a coffee after he had completed his purchase and stowed it in the car away from my prying eyes.

Then he wanted to go to Richmond, an inner Melbourne suburb which has all kinds of shops, factory outlets and warehouses to browse - luvly! He only wanted some DVD plastic covers, but while he was in that shop, I discovered an antique shop where I found a charming centrepiece for $2 (see Patra's Place for the picture). When Ken came out of the computer shop, we went for a stroll along Victoria Street and found a shop which sells ex-Government office furniture. Knowing what bargains can be found in those places, we went in, and came out $77 poorer, with this chair for me. It is so much more comfortable than my old one, which didn't have the armrests. They don't matter so much when I'm typing, but if I want to sit at the window here and stitch (which I often do), it will be ideal, as it is far less tiring when you can rest your arms on something while holding your work.

For me it was a beaut day, but for Ken, it was yet more reason to refuse to take me with him, when he wants to go shopping for himself. He says we always end up spending more money when I go with him!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Some new blogs on my side bar.

I've been cruising again...finding more neat blogs on other people's blogs! This time while catching up with Tea and Margaritas, I chanced upon a delightful blog called T-Cozy. These two ladies actually run a real tea-room cafe in the U.S.A. and their blog is full of pictures of the food they serve and the vintage items they use to present it. My other new discovery is called Vintage Pretties, and I found that on T Cozy! All you tea-time and vintage lovers out there - these are for you to enjoy too!

Happy Easter to all my Blog Friends.

Isn't this a lovely graphic? I found it here.
So far our Easter break has been very pleasant. Good Friday is always a quiet day in our house. Ken and I are not affiliated with any particular church, but we were both brought up in Protestant households, so we recognise and celebrate both Easter and Christmas (although I hate the commercialism associated with both events and I don't feel as strongly about Christmas any more).

In the morning, I visited three of my home care clients to help them shower and dress for their day, and I was home by 11 a.m. Ken was still in bed, but after a phone call from friends nearby inviting us to lunch, he got up and sorted himself out while I did a load of washing. We spent a happy time with our friends, then came home to have fresh steamed fish, chips and salad for tea. After tea we settled down to watch one of Ken's many Biblical story DVDs - this time he chose "King Of Kings" - one that he often likes to watch at Easter.

Gosh this year is flying by already - my 59th birthday is coming up fast, and I'm looking forward to spending the morning with ten of my family and friends, having breakfast at one of the beautiful wineries in the Yarra Valley nearby. A friend had a birthday breakfast here a few years ago and ever since then, I have wanted to do the same thing for my birthday. This is the year!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Lots of men's ties for Barb!

My friend Barb in U.S.A. does interesting things with ties. In fact, if you check out her blog Woof Nanny, you will see she does all kinds of interesting crafty things! I found a bag of men's ties in an opshop today for $3, and snapped them up for her. These are two closeup photos; the ties are actually brighter than what they look here. Some are a bit plain and dull - see the brown ones. The others are brighter - I love that blue one with the flowers! And the red one with all the white sheep, with one black sheep in the middle - cute, LOL! Hope you can use them, Barb!

Monday, April 02, 2007

Topsy, Dandruff and Cod Liver Oil.

Topsy likes to tuck herself behind the cushions on our sofa, and anyone that discovers her gets bitten or clawed. I took these two shots tonight. One great big greeny-gold eye showing under the cushions, and the other was taken looking down on her while Ken held the cushions aside.

At first glance, she has a lovely glossy coat, but if we stroke her long enough, little white specks appear. When I asked the vet about it, he said it is a kind of dandruff, caused by her skin being dry. He suggested we mix cod liver oil in with her food. Well, I searched high and low, but could only find cod liver oil in capsules, not in bottles like it used to be sold. So I bought some capsules, and wasted two or three of them on Topsy. I broke them open and poured the contents over her food. She got to within a foot of her bowl, looked at it, ears went back, and she turned and looked at me with such a look of disgust on her little black face, I burst out laughing! She refused to have anything to do with that, so the whole lot, food and all, went into the garbage. I tried the oil with different foods, and tried to give her a capsule, all to no avail. So she still has dandruff (I brush her several times a week to try and get rid of as much as possible), and I'm taking the cod liver oil capsules. But not to cure dandruff! I am reading a book about living with Arthritis and it claims that all of those fish oil/Omega 3 capsules are good for reducing the effects of arthritis, so I'm not wasting my money after all!

Like my Socks?

Some bloggers put photos of their shoes on their blogs. Well, I'm going to be different.

adopt your own virtual pet!