Thursday, April 25, 2013

ANZAC Day musings

I realised something this morning. It suddenly came to me as I was lying in bed thinking about getting up and how I should have gone to an ANZAC Day service, that I really don't know much about my grandparents and their war service.

I mean, I know that they served - all four of them. I know that Grandpa B, Nanna A and Nanna B were in the Army, and Grandpa A was in the Air Force. I know Grandpa B fought with in PNG, and was at the Battle of Milne Bay. I know Nanna A was a nurse and Nanna B was in the records office. Grandpa A was in the NT at an air base.

So I googled. And I couldn't find much - how sad next to nothing of their time in the defence force is digitised! And yet I know there are photos of them all, somewhere, from this era. I have seen pictures of them in uniform - Grandpa A looking like Errol Flynn with his dashing mustache and rakish Air Force cap, Nanna A in the most surprisingly enormous stiff white nurse's cap. I'm going to make it my mission to root out the old photo albums, and scan some things.

They never really talked about it. Grandpa B told me only one thing about his time in New Guinea - that the rivers in the jungle were icy cold, as they came straight down off the mountains. He never talked about the fighting, or the Japanese, or his mates that died. Nanna B would sometimes mention the records office, but only how sad it was when they got the KIA and MIA lists, and they would have to send all the telegrams out to the soldier's families. Of them all, I think Grandpa A may have told me some things but I never asked him before he died.

And now I'm married into an Army family - both C's parents served (his dad for 20 years) as did his half-brother. C tried many times to get in but was rejected because of a dodgy knee. I think it broke his heart, that.

It makes me wonder - what can I do to serve? Should I do more for my country, my community? It's not something we think about much in peacetime, but it dovetails nicely with a thought I've had lately about volunteering and getting more involved.

So, as I watched the Dawn Service from Gallipoli this morning, my thoughts were not only with my family members that have served and gone, but also of what I can do besides buying a badge or a poppy.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Camera phone baby

My iphone crashed yesterday. Hard. Apps kept failing and then it had a total spack attack, trying to reboot itself and not quite being able to. It was like it was stuck in an infinite loop that only The Doctor could understand.

Anyhoo, tonight I'm backing up my photos (over 3000 of them now! WTF!), then the whole phone, then upgrading to the new iOS. Because that is a thing I should have done weeks ago.

While doing this, I noticed I take lots of photos of the same stuff. Like...

New buildings

Old buildings

 Stuff I see

 Stuff I wore
 The ground

 The ceiling

 What I ate

 What I drank 

What I baked

 And, of course, too many selfies,

What do you take photos of the most?

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Local, Secondhand, Handmade: The Kustom Krafts Brisbane Retro & Vintage Markets

Yesterday I dragged my mum to the Kustom Krafts Brisbane Retro & Vintage Markets. I had been looking forward to it for a long time - I went to one a few months ago and loved it!

Unfortunately the weather was terrible and by the time we parked and got there we were soaking wet thanks to an insufficient umbrella. Due to the rain, all the outside stalls had been crammed inside the Sandgate Bowls Club and it was extremely crowded!

Though I loved the actual market, I felt rushed and crowded the whole time - there was always someone bumping or pushing, and I felt I couldn't linger over the stalls as there were always people behind waiting to get through. And so, uncharacteristically, I didn't buy a thing!

As I drove home, I resolved to search online for as many stallholders as I could. Here are six of my favourite businesses that were there - all local; all making or repurposing fabulous things. You all know I'm a huge fan of stuff like this!

Ella Mobbs vintage butter plate with tea lady illustration

I've admired this talented lady's work for a while - she combines cool art with vintage china to create unique pieces. She also makes brooches and hair clips; and artwork is available as prints.

Huis Design Timber Bird Brooch

It wasn't only the wooden jewelry that caught my eye - this brand also had for sale on the day soy wax candles in vintage tea cups. Adore!

What a great range of quality vintage items! My mum bought two plates, while I drooled over the kitchen canisters and a Staffordshire trio. Stalls like this make me happy.

Rag Top Vinyl

Who can resist a good repurposed record? Rag Top Vinyl makes everything from bowls to cake stands. Their items and not only unique, they're retro cool!

SUGAR retro clutch purse

SUGAR makes handmade soaps, funky vintage and retro-inspired bags and accessories. I fell in love with the hawaiian-themed bags. So cute.

The Attic paper ephemera

Instantly fell in love with the paper ephemera from this local business. Hand-bound journals, cards and gift tags that will amaze you - featuring actual vintage photos and book illustrations, no reproductions. Just divine. Wish I had bought something from here now! My mum got some gift tags which was promptly put in the most darling gift bag - old sheet music sewn into a pocket. Amazing.

What's your favourite market purchase lately? Any places you'd like to recommend?

Monday, April 8, 2013

When Beach Photography Goes Bad

On the weekend we did something I have been looking forward to for ages - went up the Sunshine Coast for a night with my parents. They'd rented an apartment so we were going to sponge off them.

I took my fancy camera and decided to take some lovely ocean photos. It was overcast and rough but I was undeterred.

I love the ocean. I love the sound of it the most. On Friday afternoon, I had a cup of tea on the balcony of the apartment and just listened to it crashing onto the sand.

On Saturday morning after a big fry-up breakfast I wandered down to the beach with my hubby and dad. Dad was braving the waves, I was going to take photos.

I don't know what I was thinking. But as I was snapping away somehow the unthinking, spontaneous side of my brain decided it would be a good idea to climb on the rocks, which were covered in green algae. It was only when I slipped and went down like a sack of potatoes that the logical side of my brain decided to pipe up and say THIS WAS NOT A GOOD IDEA.

I sat there, trying not to cry and realising that there was no way I could get back up on my own with my camera and bag, so I texted hubby on the shoreline: "HELP". How embarrassing.

He came and helped me, and only laughed at me a little bit. I have an epic scrape on my knee and bruising on my foot and toes. And a good story.

Have you ever had a mishap while in pursuit of the perfect shot?


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