Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Cobargo Folk Festival - F.U.N.!!!

Cobargo, on the NSW south coast hosts a fabulous folk festival every February. The amount of talent in that part of the world, particularly among the young, is just astounding, but the festival also attracts lots of fabulous musicians from far and wide.

Cobargo is an incredibly scenic place with verdant mountains, a shallow river below the festival site and a picturesque and quaint town. The festival is held on the local oval and is always a vibrant and friendly place with market stalls, dancing, lots of kids, a continual session happening in the bar and, well, lots of happy campers!
Gillian at the session bar

Danny Spooner, Australian legend!

One of the Akolele ladies, before she picked up her uke!

Music teacher extraordinaire Dave Crowden

National Folk Festival coming up in April. I can't wait!!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Early morning looks so good!

I am a morning person. One of those people who sings in the morning and waxes lyrical about the pale light and promise of the beginning of the day. 

I have started my art and design course and am loving it! I had forgotten what fun it is to be a learner. Fresh tea, home grown tomatoes, new day...... what's not to like?

 a visual journal is one of those things us art students take very seriously. I decorated mine with an old lino print. The saintly julie delves  :-)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Late summer veges...

Surely one of the great pleasures of summer is eating the vegetables and fruit that come from your own vege garden. Danz and I both love to grow our own food and have planted many fruit trees on our suburban block, as well as developing three little vege plots. Each plot is about 2.5 square metres and we always have something edible growing. 

This has been a cool, wet summer and an odd year for growing, though some of the veges have loved the weather. We have the best silver beet crop ever and the beans are very 'Jack and the Beanstalk', growing by the day. The basil is prolific and yummy so lots of delicious pesto and basil flavoured salads and sauces.

This is the first year that we have grown onions and they were just fabulous. They are mild, dense and crunchy and very easy to eat in salads as well as cooked. 

The tomatoes are suddenly all ripening, as they are inclined to do, so I picked a few kilos yesterday and made some tomato sauce to put away.

We grew different zucchinis this year. They are ball shaped and have big seeds and the bush is not very prolific. We have decided to go back to the usual long sort of zuchs next year, although it is interesting to try something different.

We had a wonderful family lunch with our four girls today and Danz made a curry feast. He proudly announced that every dish had something fresh from the garden in it! 

Happy gardening to all of you :-)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Time to admit the truth.....

I am a closet aspiring musician. It's true. Making up in optimism for what I lack in talent I started to learn to play the melodeon about three years ago. I was lucky in that I come from a very musically talented family AND learned piano accordion as a child so I had a heads up........

I haven't had any lessons on my melodeon (referred to as a 'box' in England, but obviously not a great soubriquet here in Oz), just practising at home. However I am also a member of a fantastic online forum called which is like having a local folk club full of friendly experts and other aspiring learners to visit and get support and advice from.
I know the internet has it's downside, but really it is rather fabulous. has a monthly challenge called Tune of the Month, whereby members vote on a tune to learn during the next month and, hopefully, to post their version on the forum via video, sound file or whatever. This little tune 'Bear Dance' was the tune for January. I learned it in the last couple of days so my version is not exactly fab, but posting the ToTM's is one of my aspirations for this year so, crappy or not, I got the video up. Funnily enough as soon as I hit the 'capture' button on iMovie I get stage fright and stuff up so it took about 15 takes to get this minute or so of video. No audience or anything, just me and my Mac. What is that about. Oh well, it is good for the soul.

I humbly offer 'Bear Dance' .