Monday, December 23, 2013

Weekly Top Shot: BLUE

One of my favourite times of the day/night to shoot. Blue Hour on the Hastings River, Port Macquarie, NSW.

Weekly Top Shot

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


I don't know about you, but I absolutely love reflections.
To me, they are an invitation to sit & soak in the beauty of nature; to sit and just be...

Friday, December 13, 2013

A Mother's Love...

Words can't adequately express how proud I am of these 3 amazing young adults! They have incredible love & respect for one another and for me. They are proof that tough love and discipline ARE essential in raising children, that single parents CAN successfully raise well adjusted children with the other parent being totally out of the picture, and that siblings CAN be best friends.

Sarah (29), Ben (22) & Bec (21)

These 3 have achieved so much in the last (almost) 4 years since I was remarried. I am incredibly proud of the relationship they all have with my husband Michael. They love and respect him and refer to him as their "Dad" in conversations.

My oldest daughter, Sarah, has completed a Diploma of Interior Design and is now working in her dream job for a highly respected Interior Design firm. She and her husband have just bought a lovely Queensland worker's cottage which Sarah will have the joy of utilising her wonderful gift to renovate & decorate it. It will be a welcome change, with regard to living and outdoor space, from their tiny apartment.

My youngest son, Ben, has only 12 months left of his Bachelor of Engineering and has done very well this year. He has also been working part time for an Engineering related company while he completes his degree. He has a lovely girlfriend who we have known for almost 10 years. They have been going strong for 18 months.

My youngest daughter, Bec, has finally found her niche and is half way through a Bachelor of Nursing. She is thriving in her chosen field of study, and is a mine of medical information. She also has a great part time job in the hospitality industry and has received a couple of awards for her consistently high work ethic.

Yes, I'm a very proud Mum! They have seen much adversity in their early years, but have risen above it all. They may have had life without a Dad, and gone without many things that their friends considered "normal". However, they have never expressed the desire to have had more opportunities, more things, or a better life. In fact, they often say how appreciative & blessed they are for the life they had and the opportunities I could afford give them.

I am truly blessed and I can unashamedly say that I raised them right. 

Unfortunately my oldest son, Daniel (24, and not in the photo above), has chosen not to remain in contact with any of his family. He is a prodigal. For the last 5 1/2 years, he has been in and out of our lives... over those years, the "in" times became shorter and shorter and the "out" times have become longer and longer. The last time he was in our lives was Feb/March 2011 for 5 short weeks while he stayed with us after some trouble he'd gotten himself into. It was then I was able to meet my grandson, Matthew (who is now 3 1/2). I have never met my grand daughter, Annabelle (now almost 2), and we recently discovered there is another child on the way (most likely born already). After my son and his partner (now his wife) left, they assured us we would "never see them again".

This is the last photo I have of my son, Daniel, and his son, Matthew (then 9 months old, March 2011)
It has been over 2 1/2 years since we have seen Daniel and it doesn't get any easier. In fact, time makes it even harder. I miss him terribly every single day. My other 3 children miss him terribly, too. They miss the fun, gifted, loving, caring, compassionate brother that he was growing up. He valued family highly and was very protective of his siblings... and of me. I still love Daniel dearly, and long for the day when he remembers just how much his family once meant to him!

L-R: Daniel, Ben, me, Sarah & Bec, on my wedding day December 2009

Christmas is drawing closer and closer. For me and my children Christmas was always a wonderful day filled with joy, happiness & togetherness. I am sure this year will be a wonderful family day again, but there will still remain that nagging feeling that a part of me is missing.
As with my other 3 children, I love Daniel with all my heart. The greatest gift right now would be to have him & his little family here to celebrate Christmas & life with the rest of us...
If not, then this is a message to my son:

I love you with all my heart and I know deep down that you know that. I also believe that deep down in your heart, you love your family and miss us all. I will never understand why you have chosen to walk away, but whenever you choose to come back to your family, we will greet you with open arms as if nothing ever happened, because that's what family is about.
We love you Dan and miss you terribly. We miss you all. Don't stay away too long.

Your loving Mum. xxoo

Sunday, December 1, 2013


We don't celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia, but I often wish we did. I planned to post this on Thursday, but it didn't happen. So, here's my Thanksgiving post a few days late.

It's important to focus on the things in life we are grateful for rather than complain about the things we wish were different.

This is our local lake (only a 500m walk from home). It's my go to place when I don't want to drive to Moreton Bay for sunset. It's so serene. We are so blessed!
There's so much in life to be grateful for...

"Of all the attitudes we can acquire, surely the attitude of gratitude is the most important and by far the most life-changing." ~ Zig Ziglar

What are you grateful for??

Linking up with these memes:

Sunset Sunday with Scott @Just Used Pixels      AND

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Point Cartwright

Point Cartwright is a beautiful rocky headland at the southern end of Mooloolaba. When the tide is low, you can walk right around the headland without getting wet.
This particular afternoon, I had planned to shoot sunset from the middle of the headland.

The view south from the top of the headland

Walking around the headland from Mooloolaba Beach

It was hard to decide on which direction to shoot from, so here's a few different views..

Sharing with:

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Weekly Top Shot: Brisbane City by night

This wasn't taken this week as I am recovering from shoulder surgery. (Yes, another surgery) It's been a huge few months! This one was taken a few weeks ago.
It is my absolute favourite night time long exposure shot of Brisbane. I even managed to get a plane trail.

Weekly Top Shot

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Holidaying in Northern NSW: Part 7

On the final day of our holiday in Port Macquarie, NSW, we decided to head back down to "Greater Port Macquarie region" and drive up North Brother Mountain to Laurieton Lookout. We had been told the views from the lookout were absolutely beautiful. We weren't disappointed!

Looking north east from Laurieton Lookout, the panoramic view shows Camden Haven Inlet with Gooleys Lagoon on the right. The Camden Haven River winds further inland. The large lake to the left is Queens Lake. It was a little hazy due to some fires burning further inland, however, you can just make out Taking Point in the distance.

Looking south from the second viewing point, you can see Watson Taylor's Lake. Far in the distance, to the left, is Crowdy Head.

That evening, I photographed sunset on the Hastings River.

The following morning we checked out and began our scenic drive back to Brisbane. As I was required to make regular stops due to the DVT in my leg, we had chosen a number of towns along the coast where  we would have our drink/food breaks.

Our first stop was the beautiful South West Rocks; a quaint little seaside town with stunning coastline & mountain views. The next few photos are of Horseshoe Bay.

Little Bay...

Southeast of South West Rocks township is a headland called Smoky Cape.
The view north from Smoky Cape Lighthouse

Looking south from the lighthouse, along the 16km long South Smoky Beach.

We encountered some Kangaroos on our way out of South West Rocks. This was the dominant & very protective male.

More wonderful places here:    
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