Saturday, November 26, 2011

Two Big Months of Activity

My New Job

In September, just before the school holidays I was asked to work on a part time basis at the beautiful jewellry shop called Diamonds Exclusive.  I love working there - I love all the diamonds and I enjoy the interaction with the tourists who visit the store.
Here I am behind the counter at work

Norfolk Island Rescue Squad's 20th Anniversary
On the 11 of September there was a function at Government House to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Norfolk Island's Volunteer Rescue Squad which is headed by my friend Melissa Graham.  Again, it was a delightful evening outside in the gardens of Government House and we enjoyed it very much.
Anna, Melissa and me at Government House

Rob in his new suit
When Elvis Came to Town

It seems like September was Elvis month on Norfolk Island.  There was an Elvis impersonator competition that included local contestants as well as from Australia and New Zealand.  There was even a female impersonator as well.  Rob and I didn't attend the actual competition but we did get to two of the Elvis shows - one at the RSL and the other at Paradise with two different Elvis'.
Fenella and me at the RSL Elvis Sow

Rob and me at the Paradise Show

The Paradise Elvis show was much better than the RSL one

Norfolk Island Police Force's 80th Anniversary

I was quite busy in October as well.  First there was the Norfolk Island Police's 80 Anniversary held on the 14 October.  Over 20 AFP members and former Norfolk Island Police members came to Norfolk Island for a dinner at Government House to celebrate.  It was a great night and the big winners of the evening was Melissa's Norfolk Island Rescue Squad which was the recipient of all the "fines" which were paid throughout the evening. 

Rob and me in our finery

Melissa, Glenn and me at Governor's Lodge

Norfolk Island Garden Club Winners Tour

The next day was the annual Norfolk Island Garden Club awards where all the club members and guests boarded two buses and toured all the winning gardens.

Elizabeth and me beside a gorgeous wisteria

A view from one of the winning gardens

Gorgeous Norfolk Island looking at Hibiscus Drive
Andrew's 14th Birthday

That evening Andrew had his 14th birthday party with his friends.  They were well fed with nachos and pizza and loads of coke to drink.  Sarah, again, made his pinata birthday cake which is devine.  Andrew stayed awake all night as per ususal although his friends nodded on and off during the night and the next day.



Bridge Ladies Birthday Lunch

At the end of the month the Bridge girls went to have lunch at Sublime for a birthday lunch.  Annie Walker, Annie Foote and Cherisse all have birthdays in late October so it was as good a time as any to get out together outside of the Bridge morning.  Lunch, of course was sublime - ha.


Bridesmaid's Premier
In November the Quota club hosted a night at the movies which was showing Bridesmaids.  Everyone was invited to dress as a bridesmaid, bride or flower girl which most did.  Here is Candida the Bride, Mel the Bridesmaid and me, the mother of the bride!!!  The movie wasn't as funny as I was told, but at least at this cinema we were able to bring in our bubbly and I won the major raffle prize of a necklace and matching earrings.  Cristina made the lovely wedding cake which we all enjoyed at the end of the movie.



















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Friday, September 30, 2011

High Tea on Norfolk Island

Every year around her birthday in September, the lovely Cristina McRitchie invites her girlfriends around to her Auntie Mary's home for high tea. 

The Birthday Girl
 Auntie Mary lives at Devon House in Queen Elizabeth Drive and she has the most glorious Norfolk Island home with huge verandahs and, of course, the beautiful lush gardens that are so green and full of tropical plants.

It was the best opportunity to meet people that I had not yet met and also to catch up with those that I don't see very often.


 The weather turned out to be sunny and warm which was perfect as the days before had been extremely ho hum. 

 The ladies all turned out in their High Tea outfits which meant pretty dresses with flowers on them (which I didn't own) but I at least wore something with alot of colour at least


There were about 15 or so lovely ladies including Cristina's mum Sally who came over for a visit from Australia.  There were some young kiddies there too playing on the expansive lawns.



Everyone bought a plate of food and drinks so there was so much food there and although the invitation was from 2.00pm to 5.00 I didn't leave until nearly 6.30 as we were all having such a fun time.

Me and Anna
Happy birthday Cristina - next year is the big "40".

Saturday, September 17, 2011

People Who Came to the Island to Visit

My Mum's Visit

Rob and I had been here for about 4 months when my mother and her two friends came to the island.  They stayed at Fantasy Island Resort and they were here for a week.  It was great to see my Mum and I really enjoyed showing off the island to her and her friends.

Down at Emily Bay on a windy day
The first tour we went on was the introductory 1/2 day tour which took us all around the island with the driver telling us all about things we were looking at.

Trent Christian's biggest fan - she even bought his CD at the Fish Fry
During that week we went to a fish fry which was supposed to be held at Puppy's Point but it was raining so it was moved to the South Pac Hotel and we enjoyed Wonderland By Night as well.

We took Mum to dinner at the RSL
We took Mum out for dinner at the RSL and she really loved her sausages and we also went to the Paradise one night too.  Lunch at Governor's Lodge was also a must.  I loved seeing my Mum and she loved Norfolk Island too.

Dot Moran and Violet's Visit

In Mid October 2010 Rob's sister Jo rang us to advise us that their Mum's oldest friend Dot Moran was going to be visiting the island and would love to visit Rob who she had known since he was a baby.

I had never met this lovely lady before but I knew her very well through the stories that my mother-in-law Lorna would tell me about their antics when they were children back in Deniliquin.


Dot is on the right and her friend Violet is on the left

Dot is a master cake maker and decorator and it was a Munro family tradition that Dot make and decorate the wedding cakes for all three of Lorna's children and the christening cakes of her grandchildren.  This means that my wedding cake and both christening cakes of my boys were all made by this remarkable lady.

It was lovely to finally meet Dot and Violet and we had a lovely afternoon tea under our pergola. 

Carolyn and Arthur's Visit

My cousin Carolyn rang me out of the blue in June to let me know that she and her husband were coming to Norfolk Island with some friends and would love to catch up with me.  I was very excited to see Carolyn as we rarely get together as she lives in Gatton, Qld.  The last time we had seen each other was in 2005 when they both came to dinner when we were still living in Calwell.

At The Olive catching up
 I met them at The Olive and Arthur brought his laptop to show me all the family ancestry detective work that Carolyn had been up to.  She also has many photos on her computer of her mum and my mum as little girls with our grandparents which she sent me copies.

On the deck at Sublime
As they came with friends to Norfolk Island we didn't want to intrude too much on their holiday but Rob and I took them out for lunch at Sublime at Mokutu.  Not only is the food divine but the views from the deck are spectacular.

At Forrester's Court - Elephant Rock is just over my shoulder
After our lunch Rob had to go to work and Arthur wanted to have a lie down back at his motel so Carolyn and I ventured out by ourselves.  What to do on Norfolk Island at 3pm in the afternoon on a Sunday??  Well I remember a long time ago that I warned Brad Forrester that one day I am going to find Forrester's Court and make a visit.  He advised me that his and Ariane's 5 star accommodation was right down the end of Mill Road and to keep going after you reach the cattlegrid at the bottom and that was the beginning of their driveway!

The lovely Ariane showing us around her beautiful property

So Carolyn and I ventured down Mill Road trying to find Forrester's Court and we did.  Lovely chatelaine Ariane was surprised to see us but made us feel very welcome.  She showed us all the cottages which are absolutely luxurious and of course the fantastic views from their property.  We stayed for a couple of hours with Ariane and we absolutely loved every minute of our visit.  Carolyn later told me that was the highlight of her holiday - how nice is that!

Ken and Jan's Visit

Our last visitors to the island was Ken and Jan, our friends from Tasmania who we stayed with way back in January.  They were the first visitors to actually stay with us and Rob and I were so looking forward to their visit.
Ken, Jan and me at the Mt Pitt lookout
We took them all around the island and showed them all the popular places.  The lookout at Mt Pitt is always a go as you can view the whole island in one go and you can see how huge the airport runway is compared to the island itself.

Arthur Evans and us on his History in the Making tour

We also went on Arthur Evan's tour History in the Making which Rob and I had not yet done.  It was a fantastic tour and Arthur showed us places down at Kingston that I had never noticed before and explained what their purposes was which was extremely informative.  The tour took us back to his property where he showed us how the islanders made rope from leaves amongst others.


Jan and Rob and the top of Anson's Bay
Andrew joined the four of us in a Murder Mystery Dinner held in a home in Mill Road.  What a great night it was too.  We all got into it by wearing costumes like those worn in the mid 1850's and we were all given characters of people that actually existed at Kingston during the convict days.

At the Murder Mystery dinner

Our friend Sue Buffet was the person who kept us all on track on trying to find the murderer.  She told us that "Mr So and So was found murdered that afternoon" and we all were suspects. It was pretty hard to keep track of all the movements on the 25 or so people at our table.  Each character had to ask and answer questions of their whereabouts on the day of the murder and I actually gave up trying to figure out who the murder was.

The boys in character
Towards the end of the 3 course dinner Sue asked us all to write down who we thought the murderer was, what the murder weapon was and where was the murder committed.  I, as well as most people at the dinner, thought it was the poor victim's wife, who used strychnine, at their home.


Jan, hamming it up in costume
Once all the papers were in, Sue turned off the lights and asked that the murderer please stand.  I couldn't believe it when the person sitting next to me stood up.  The murderer ended up being Rob of all people and I had no idea it was him - neither did anyone else by the way - ha.  Rob received a bottle of wine for being the murderer which was really nice of Sue.


The girls, freezing at the Fish Fry
We took Ken and Jan to the Fish Fry at Puppy's Point and I was so pleased that the weather out held even if it was freezing for us Canberrans and Tasmanians. The last time I went to a fish fry was when I went with Mum where it ended up at South Pac due to rain which isn't quite the same as Puppy's Point.  We had the most loveliest time.  We ate heaps of food and Trent kept us entertained as usual and the island dancers who came at the end of the evening took Jan and Ken up to dance with them - what a hoot!
Lunch at Sublime
Ken and Jan ended up only being on the island for 5 days really due to their flights.  But everyday we were out and about and Rob and I really enjoyed their company.

I suppose that Ken and Jan are going to be our last visitors as I return to Canberra in January which is only 4 months away.  I wish more people had come to visit during my time here, but there you go.








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Saturday, July 16, 2011

My 49th Birthday

My birthday guests at Norfolk Blue

Late in June my good friend Anna and I started discussing my up and coming birthday and what type of party I would like and I told her - "a surprise party".  We laughed.  But she did organise my party for me.  We went to Norfolk Blue Restaurant for dinner on Saturday, 2nd of July and there were 6 of us and 2 guests came for coffee and cake afterwards.


The delicious birthday cake
 Both Anna and Mel went to the restaurant earlier and decorated the table with pink steamers, purple and pink balloons and all sorts of table decorations - it looked so pretty.

At the end of the night - we all posed

We had a great night and a lovely cake was made by the chef and they all sang "Happy Birthday" as I blew out 4 candles.  Thank you Anna and Mel for a wonderful night.

Us hamming it up for the camera
 On my actual birthday on Wednesday 6th July, our Wednesday lunch group came to my house for lunch.  I put out my usual cheese and antipasto platters, lots of wine and juice and I made my "famous" Donna Hay Bacon and Lentil soup (with extra stuff from me) and crusty bread.  They said that loved the soup and Mel even asked for the recipe.   I decorated the table with the same decorations used at Norfolk Blue and we all wore brooches made out of gold gift decorations.  We had a great lunch.
 
Our friend Vicki came over on Thursday afternoon and bought my favourite alcoholic beverage - Omni - yum.  We drank the whole bottle between us in 30 minutes whilst we had a laugh together and a great catch up.

Vicky and me having a laugh

My last birthday celebration was the family dinner.  I was so full after lunch that Rob suggested we go out for dinner the next night which I gratefully accepted.

Dressed to go to Hillies
 My choice of restaurant for us to go to was Hillies and the three of us had dinner there on Thursday 7th of July.  Rob and I had lamb and I remember that Andrew had pork with chorizo as he recognised the chorizo as something he likes as I have been including it in my winter casseroles and he likes the taste of them.

Andrew and me at Hillies
Andrew had room for dessert but Rob and I were absolutely full.  Kim the owner was having dinner there as well and she came over for a long chat as we hadn't seen her for such a long time.


The dinner was so nice and we loved it.








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Sunday, June 5, 2011

Things I Do to Keep Myself Amused

This post is a mixure of bits and pieces of photos that I have collected over the last two months.  It gives you, dear reader of my blog, an idea of people I see and things that I do on a semi regular basis.


PLAYING BRIDGE


This photo is of Vicky and me on Vicky's deck.  Rob and I had been to Vicky and Michael's house for dinner and bridge but this was the first time we had been during daylight hours and I had yet to see her beautiful view.

They live on Hibiscus Drive off Stockyard Road and they have the most beautiful spot with gorgeous sea views.  I know I carry on about sea views but because I don't have one myself (sob) I love going to houses and seeing their part of the island and their particular view.

Both Vicky and Michael are excellent bridge players and they have been kind enough to offer to teach Rob how to play.  I am an old hand at bridge now as I have been a regular Thursday morning bridge girl for over a year now!  I remember playing at Annie Walker's house once on a Sunday afternoon and it was the first time I had played bridge against Vicky and Annie and I were partners.

Needless to say Vicky and her partner beat us hands down and I swore then and there that I would never be Vicky's opponent again and that is the reason that she is always my partner and our husbands are our opponents - by the way I still lose - poor Vicky, she's far too polite to tell me she'd rather another partner!!!

PROGRESSIVE DINNER


One afternoon my dear friend Elizabeth rang and asked if Rob and I would like to join herself and her Rob and two Tasmanian friends who were visiting to a Progressive Dinner on a Thursday night.  Unfortunately, my Rob was unable to join us as he had to work that night but it didn't stop me from joining in.

Our first stop was a Sublime at Mokutu for entree.  This restaurant is owned by Shari and her husband and Shari is also the chef there.  We five were shown to our table (shown above) and around the room is all this beautiful artwork.   I found one particular artwork behind Rob leaning against the wall (you can see a bit of it on the left hand side of the photo).

I asked Shari about the painting and she said that she had painted it and explained to me what was in it as it was quite dark in the restaurant.  Anyway, short story is I bought it and Rob and I picked it up the next day and it is now proudly hung on our loungeroom wall.

Our next stop was at a lovely home in Mill Road where we opened our wine and ate fish pie and veg which was delicious.  Then we went to a home in Ferny Lane for dessert.  The home belonged to Rachel who is a caterer here on Norfolk Island. 

DRINKS AT FENELLA'S

This photo has Julie, Anna and Fenella at the front and Karen and me behind.  Fenella regularly has these "do's" at her home and it was my first time that I could actually make it there.  Everyone bought something to munch on and something to drink.

Most of us arrived at 5.00 and during the night other ladies came and went and we were all pleased at the new food that they brought as we were still ready to nibble and eat.

We all chatted outside on her verandah and Julie and I were the last to leave at 8.15.  What a great night we had.


GARDEN CLUB

I am a regular Garden Club attendee and the last time the Garden Club met we had two lovely gardens to visit.  The first one was on Driver Christian Road and we all parked at the accommodation next door and walked over to the garden.

The garden was extremely large and immaculate.  This photo was taken from their deck - yet another lovely view and this one includes Napean and Phillips Islands.


The next garden was the "before" garden of my friends Elizabeth and Rob who bought their new property in October.  They live on Middlegate Road and this is where the club had their "group shot" and our afternoon tea which we have every meeting.



Elizabeth took the group right around her property showing us what they planned to do to it.  They have a new chook run amongst other things.  We all had a lovely cuppa and lots of food.  It was a great day.

RED HATTERS

The Red Hatters get together on a regular basis too.  We had all gotten together at Heather's place on Cutter's Corn.  Heather is on the left hand side of the photo.  She had made a lovely lasagne and someone else had brought mac and cheese.  The rest of us bought nibbles and drink.

The photos shows Pat, Heather,  Rowena, Keydon, Kaye, Colleen, Stephanie and Anne and I, of course, am taking the photo.

It was decided by someone that we were all old enough to have dessert first then the main course so they all had their icecream cones as their first course (as you do).

THOMAS COMES HOME FOR A VISIT


On Friday morning 3 June 2011 at 12.45 AM the plane from Sydney FINALLY arrives.  There was an unfortunate 4 hour delay in Newcastle.

Tom is staying for a week and will be going to Melbourne next Friday to visit his Grandma for the weekend then back to Canberra on Sunday ready for school on the Tuesday as Monday is the Queen's Birthday holiday.

Anyway, that is part of my life here on Norfolk Island.  I love my life here.  Everyone is so socially motivated and are so keen to get together and do things and I love joining in.  I have such a short time left here and I want to get as much out of this beautiful island before I leave.










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