I have been on leave since late October. It has been great these past few weeks not to think about getting up to work in the morning (or leaving home in the evening for the night shifts!)
Didn't have that much planned really, getaway down to the Central Coast, clear up odd jobs around the house and, of course, get in some photography time.
Kim and I had a wonderfully relaxing time on the Central Coast. It is only an hour or so down the road from where we live but, we hadn't really taken the time to have a look. We spent 4 days there and still didn't get around to see the whole place.
Our favourite place would easily have been Hardys Bay and Killcare area. Some gorgeous picturesque spots. If you're in that area, you must try a pie or sausage roll from The Fat Goose restaurant at Killcare. They were just the BEST! We also lunched at the Patonga Pub which has a beautiful bar area and outdoor dining which looks out onto Brisk Bay.
Got some awesome photos. On one particular day we went to the Mt Ettalong lookout. I am setting up the camera gear when Kim says...' Has someone put a rubber snake on that tree or is it real?'.... Check out the wonderful pics of the 'rubber' snake I got! A beautiful Green Tree Snake - non-venomous of course!
The weather was perfect, we ate out each night.....Unfortunately we had to return to reality..........
We managed to get some work done on our courtyard area. It was looking a little bland and needed something to theme it up a bit. We found some great looking wrought iron and wood decorations that we hung on the fence in between our potted Portwine Magnolia bushes. The place has a nice Tuscan feel to it now and once the Magnolias get larger they will cover and soften up the fence a lot; it was pretty stark looking.
I also managed to get in some other small jobs, you know, the ones that sit around waiting; they are not urgent but every time you are doing something else they nag you about how slack you have been! The big job I had hoped to get done, doors on the wardrobes in the bedrooms, is still not done. It is coming up to Christmas and really, spending the money on doors right now would curtail our festive season funds! They can just bloody wait until next year!
I have also decided to go back to basics with a bit of film photography as well. One can get a bit lazy with the new digital cameras these days and, although I love my Canon 600d, film is a challenge because you only get one chance to get it right! I loaded 2 films. 1 into my Pentax A3 35mm SLR and an Ilford 120 film into my Dads' Voigtlander Bessa 1 bellows camera. Both are B&W films, which is exciting!
I got the 120 film from a bloke in Speers Point, Les Porter Photography. What he doesn't know about cameras and photography isn't worth thinking about. He had a good look at the Voigtlander and pointed out a few things. Now, this camera is about 60 years old. We found that at shutter speeds of 1/50 or less, the lens diaphragm will stick open. The self timer spring probably needs a service and lubricant because it too, gets stuck. These are things I can live with though because I just want to take portraits with the camera and won't be using it on any shutter speeds in the 1/50 or less bracket nor will I need to use the self timer.
Anyway, that is it for this update. I still have 6 days 'til I reappear at work. Friday night is our street Christmas Party. Luckily now, I am off on the Saturday so I can enjoy a good catch up and will at least have one day to fully recover prior to returning to the Torture Chamber!
I hope you are all well. It is coming up to the silly season and the traffic is getting worse as people hurry to catch the shops (already!)
Take care everyone.
p.s. One last addition here which is of our latest addition. Meet 'Rocky' - Chihuahua x Miniature Foxy - a 21st present for our daughter Rhiannan.