Saturday, December 31, 2005

Merry Xmas and Happy New Year

Stan the Man in his element. Beer in one hand and snag in the other ....and at 85!

Weiwen on walkabout

Weiwen is here to see the New year in with us. We have just returned from a trip into the never never. Bloody hot! Today in Callington it's raining. Such is the great Australian cool change!

Thursday, December 15, 2005


(Bottom) Click on the picture to make it large and then you will see that Mernie's whip is actually a fly swatter and Fonzie is thinking "Oh brother!"
(Top) My Dad Stan the Man 85 and still in the saddle!
Click on this picture and you'll see that I have the fly swatter and Dad has a 'back scratcher'. As you can see the horses are really frightened!
January.....Lost the page on my calender so I guess some how it never happened. I do recall getting rather sozzled on NY Eve and it having a major affect on my New Year's resolution .........which lasted for about 2 days!

February.....Sister Julie and hubby Steve left to live in Canberra. Or was that in January? Hmm! Installed the Mural at the Dog and Ute in Callington. Well Mernie did. As usual he was paid in Beer. Thirsty work that!

March..... Good friends Janice and Gary from the US visited. A whirlpool trip. Would have been lovely if they could have stayed long enough to breathe in the fresh air, drink the beer and swat the flies.Or is that drink the flies, swat the fresh air and breathe in the beer?
Did a Mural for the Hahndorf Inn here in the Adelaide Hills around the theme of the Great Eastern Steeplechase. Mernie installed it for more beer!

April.....A week in the Flinders Ranges writing, drawing, daydreaming and swatting flies. Ah sheer bliss!

May.....Big ole nasty course of anti biotics started for CFS. Felt icky! Woe is me! Only had to be on them for 3-18mths and stay out of the light. Had enough of it by November.

June.... Oh! I'm in my studio at the Hahndorf Academy by now. Moved in in February actually but forgot to mention it. I did a free storytelling in their main gallery for 18 days running. About 15 mins each day. Had to drag people in off of the street to listen to me. Bugger for punishment I guess.

July....Preparation for SALA, the South Australian Living artists festival to start the beginning of August.

August..... SALA. Together with my good friend and artist brain-buddy Dianne Davie we sold over 20 paintings. Finished up the lease at Hahndorf and re set up my 'home studio' to become once more 'the studio home!'

September.....Worked on and completed a project for the Murray Bridge Regional Art Gallery called Meet the Waders. Together with kids from Callington made lots of papier mache wading birds. The birds turned out fabulous. The kids showed me up as usual.
Started Mural at Murray Bridge Community Lifestyles Day Option Cottage. See Previous Blogs as I do go on about this one a bit!

November......Trip to California for Mernie's Mom's 80th birthday. Mernie's son and daughter in-law followed home and did a swift tour of OZ. We all went to Kangaroo Island.
Opera at the little ole Dog and Ute in Callington. Had too much of a good time which had, once again, a major influence on my/our New Years Resolution! Hic!!

December..... Completed the Murray Bridge Mural.No beer for Mernie this time. Although they did give me enough money so I could afford to buy him a carton or two. Great project.
Niece Nessa left for a year overseas, started belly dancing classes (Luceille Ball Style) and am looking forward to picking up our good friend Weiwen on Xmas day. She will be here for two and a half weeks. A great time to be had yet!
Right now until Xmas I'm just a hive of domesticity.

Not a good year health-wise as I continue to struggle with chronic fatigue and FM as a result of some old stubborn infection.But enough of that. My motto is, if you don't have something funny to say, then don't say it.
A good year for murals though. Three major works accomplished. Mernie is wonderful and continues to somehow put up with me. Dad is 85 now and is doing well although having trouble backing a winner lately is really getting him down.New Year's resolutions revolve around figuring out what is really important and getting and staying well. I'd love y'all to check in on my blog occasionally thoughout '06 and even perhaps say hello through the comment procedure. Merry Xmas and happy trails into the year of the dog!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Rats on Pogo Sticks

Have you ever seen a rat
upon a pogo stick?
I think I saw just that
go through the scrub so thick

Boing, Boing, Boing, Boing!
It shot past like a light
Boing, Boing, Boing, Boing!
It gave me quite a fright!

I wonder where they got them
these rats must have a store
or maybe it's a warehose
with pogo sticks galore!

They must hang on real tightly
If they'd so much as cough
They'd lose their balance might they
and sure as eggs fall off!

I'm really only kidding you
those rats are not that clever.
It was really just a kangaroo
Have you seen one ? Have you ever?

Another 'Have You Ever Poem' by Ronda Eden.

Have you evr seen a rat

Monday, December 12, 2005

Grand finale'

Yay! Its done and the celebrations were lovely. It was a fun project made especially enjoyable by the great people I worked with. See the flowers sitting on the ground at right, they were presented to me. As I was carrying them around the pollen from them branded me with a lovely bright yellow beard that I unwittingly wore around while chatting with people. Finally someone told me about it. Bit like having your fly undone!

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Details of the Mural

A few close up shots of some of the 'going ons' within the Mural at Murray Bridge, Community Lifesyles Day Options Cottage.

Mural Done!

It's been a fun project. Here is the finished product with a detail of the tool shed part.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Weekend on Kangaroo Island

Here we are just hangin' out on Kangaroo Island. Great place to relax and kick back. Mernie and I are the two in the front having a bit of a smooch and the two at the back having a good ole look around are Mernie's son Corky and his wife Cindy. Don't know who the little one is. Some little kid just wanting to have his picture taken I suppose.

mural mural and more mural

The mural so far about eighty percent done. Fun on the greens!

Martin was really into it today. Along with Cassandra and Jake, he is responsible for the fluffy bushes.Good job! The mural is due to be finished on Monday so will have to really hop to it this week. I was thinking about 100 hours and I think I'll be right on the mark.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

MB Mural in progress,still

Back from the States and back to work on the mural. Here we have Sally taking pictures and giving Jake a bit of friendly advice. See Ryan in the background anticipating his next brush stroke.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

more work on the Murray Bridge mural

See here below at left Sarah loading up the brush to touch some of the thin grass areas. At right we have one of our star mural painters . This is Cassanda working on the blocking of the motorized caddy featured on the tool shed door.Cassy just loves to add a few of her own personalised touches.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

MB Mural in progress

The Commumity Lifestyles mural in Murray Bridge is coming along well. See pictured above at left is Adam.Little does he know at this stage that the image he is painting is meant to be him! Wait until I put the earring on! (He has one in his left ear). At the right is Ann using a very steady hand to block in a rather narrow and tricky pathway through the golf course. As far as I can work out, these two have loads more abilities than disabilities.Adam puts me to shame. He doesn't get a drop of paint on himself. I'd love to know how people do that!

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

The Fonz and Gump

Now for some real champs! This picture above is of Mernie's horse Fonzie.(Racing name 'Too Imperial').Its not hard to get a handsome shot of Fonzie.

Now my horse, pictured below is another matter. This is Forrest (Yes, Gump for short)and he's really a nice looking horse but it seems whenever I try to get a good shot of him he makes a face and acts silly. My Dad's a bit like that too.(See previous blog of Stan the Man).
What at Wally!!!

garden elf

I thought I was finished with the Melbourne cup and all its frivolity when I spied a poor forlorn little lepricorn in my backyard. It seemed he lost everything including his little lepricorn shirt during the big race. What could I do? I couldn't just leave him there in his grief pitifully sitting on my upturned trash can. So I immediately ran inside to fetch sustenance. It was clear to me that he was in dire need of a quick infusion of vitamin C (for Champagne) and a little color, hence the (award winning) hat. I think I was just in time. He is going to live!!

Monday, October 31, 2005

Melbourne cup history

In spite of the fact that I'm really flat out right now, what with a big exhibition coming up this week-end, in the middle of a major mural job and getting ready to take of overseas next week, I couldn't resist the invitation to attend a ladie's Melbourne cup luncheon here in Callington. Doesn't get better. Champagne, fancy hats and the excitement of the race. Not to mention that this year history was made when the champion mare (a female wots more) won the race for the third time running!! (Something that Pharlap would surely have done if he had the chance.) So, I'm glad I took the break and enjoyed it. And besides, I won a prize for best hat. A massage by our massage therapist host Donna! Yeehah and double yeehah!!! See here history being made above and the lovely Sarah Filmer one of the delectable guests and my good friend getting into the spirit of the occasion..
While everyone is reeling from the sensational victory of the winning stead I'm tending to wonder how many people are thinking about the second horse. Well I bet they are in Strathalbyn; a little country town neighbouring Callington. 'On A Juene' , the second horse, hails from Strath and really wasn't that far behind the 'golden girl!' I'd recon that one of the Strathalbyn pubs would be the place to be tonight!! My gosh, I'd better get off the computer and get down there before happy hour ends. And what a happy hour its going to be tonight.Cheers!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Joe used to be my Farrier when I had horses in Colorado. Being the starving artist I often swapped out paintings in return for my horses' footwear. This was many years ago but the other day I was surprised to receive an email from him titled 'your artwork alive and well in the USA.' Seems he had the artwork transfered to his new, and might I say quite specky pick-up truck. He says he gets lots of comments. My motto has always been "love it or hate it, you wont walk passed it!"
PS.... pity you can't see it closer. It has funny googly eyes!
Oh, my niece Shirley informs me that if you click on the picture you get to see the google eyes. She's right of course. Thanks Shirl!! Yes I know he looks like he's had a few too many!!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

This is my latest piece of art work. Who said my work is'nt serious. This chicken looks very serious indeed.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

'Heading' for greater things

Some of the results of Mernie playing around in Photo Shop. I'm just wondering where my head will end up next. This could be quite incriminating! By the way, that's a lagerphone in my left hand. Just one of the many highly technical instruments I play.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

roodroppings leading to the end of the year

Some Roo Droppings of things going on from now (Oct 19th) until the end of the year.
Currently I am working on mural sketches for Community Lifestyles in Murray Bridge. The project involves working with with some very charming people with abilities as well as disabilities. Together we will be creating a mural along a fence in front of their mini golf course. The picture here is pretty boring right now, but you'll see, it will be 'jumpin'' in a few weeks. As a natural progression we will be depicting a scene of a real golf course with 'golfcoursey-like' things going on. So far we only have the metal prep done. This Friday we will be working on some under-coating in preparation for the back ground to be set next week. We are on our way to great things. Stay tuned!
On the week-end of Nov 5th and 6th I am taking part in an exhibition/market at the Hahndorf Academy called the 'Weihnachtsmart' or Christmas fine arts market. About seven artists will be showing and selling their creations. Good quality work; no rubbish. It will be great! Although this is the first event of it's kind in Hahndorf, the organisers hope to make it an annual event. We will be there both days from 11am to 4pm. Would love to see as many people as possible show up. I'll try to get some more info up on the web.
Then on the following Thursday, the 9th of November, Mernie and I leave for the US for only 10 days to be with Mernie's Mum to celebrate her 80th birthday. Its also Mernie's birthday. He's a little younger though. Funny thing about that is that 59 years ago he really was 'a little Younger'. You see, Younger is Mernie's surname. Mernie Younger! He will always be Younger!
On the 26th of Nov. we will be attending an Opera in Callington at the Dog 'n Ute. I have been preparing some paintings for the event. (See earlier blog) Talk about something grand in a little ole'country town.
Then at the end of this month Mernie's son and his wife will be coming Down Under for a whirlpool visit. Early December will see us all on Kangaroo Island for a couple of days.
THEN, on 25th we get a special Chinese Xmas present. Our good friend Weinwen (pictured in the last blog) will be arriving from the USA to stay with us for a month.
Don't know what we are doing for New Year's but I'm voting for staying put! Maybe we could have a party and make it a Chinese New Year theme. Just for Weiwen.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Eleanora, Weiwen and a Chook Thing

My two adopted daugthers Eleanora and Weiwen in some exciting part of the world. They're not really my adopted daughters. However, if I did have two daughters I would like for them to have been just like these two lovely people.

And now some more Kiddy Lit.....

Have You Ever Been Ambushed By Chooks?

Have you ever sat eating a melon
spitting the seeds to the chooks
when a gang of them snuck up behind you
and stole the whole thing............the crooks?!!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Painting a Funky Horse of course!

Monday, October 10, 2005

Here's my Dad 'Stan the Man' hard at work picking winners. It's a tough job but he never complains about it, even when he's losing!

stan the man

Here's my Dad Stan the Man bribing the best authority for a reliable tip!
(Notice the little tummy and hand holding a carrot that's just protruding into the picture on the right. That's my hubby Mernie lining up for a bribe himself!!

stan the man

Here he is beening silly something my Dad excels in. Gotta love 'im!

(I think that's some sort of toy pig he's playing with.)

stan the man

My Dad 'Stan the Man' here seen having a serious beer rugged up on a cold winters night . I often refer to him as the kid I never had!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

This is probably the biggest papier mache piece I have ever done. I think it probably did me in as it wasn't long after this I started my treatment for chronic fatigue!
This 'giant' was commissioned by the Seven Day Adventists Reform League as part of their programme of talks concerning the giants of the Bible. Each to his own. Here he is lying down in my Callington studio pretty close to completion. When standing he measures 12' and one inch (4metresish), took over a month to build working almost every day and sucked up about 50 litres of wall paper paste. Apparently they stand him up in a huge coffin to depict the way he was discovered a few centuries ago somewhere in Ireland. I contructed him in two parts so they can transport him around to stand as a visual during their lectures. Faith is an incredible thing!

Friday Kiddy Lit

Have you ever had a centipede?

Have you ever had a centipede
right inside your pants?
Did you scream or did you jump around
or do a hula dance?

Did you wonder how it go there
that's a place it shouldn't be?
Maybe someone put it there.
Hey it wasn't me!

How do things get into your house?
Do they just knock on the door?
Then come right in and look around
for trousers on the floor!

Did your Mum say "serves you right"
for dropping clothes around
then something 'bout a lesson
'bout trousers on the ground?

I bet it was quite horrid
all those little feet
a climbin' up toward that place
where both of your legs meet!!!

So now you'll know while dressing
just what it's all about
if you leave clothes lying on the floor
be sure to ..........SHAKE THEM OUT!!!!

Monday, October 03, 2005

Callington's here!

It was my birthday this week-end.I'm a Libran an a typical one at that. The saying " I used to be indecisive but now I'm not sure" was made up for me and my type. I guess we can just see every side to a story. But that's another topic. The reason I'm blogging today is to show of my pressy! Pictured above is a painting done just for little ole me by my good artist friend Dianne Davie. I'm the one in the boots of course and the other figure is an incredibly realistic depiction of the artist herself. Dianne live's in Callington too. Just down the road actually. When we turn up to art events and such around the area people will say....Look, Callington's here! Hence the script.
There is so much to love about this painting.What fun! What true D-Daviness! Have a look at the 'things' we are towing on leashes. They are little (some are not so little) pieces of art work that we have being developing lately. We affectionately call them 'Diangos' after the Japanese word for dumpling 'Dango' ceramic sculptures created by an artist called Jun Kaneko. His are magnificent, majestic structures and they bring in the big bucks. Ours are made of papier mache, are much more affordable and have oodles more personality.It wont be long before they take Australia by storm. Anyone who doesn't own at least one will be considered a nobody!
You just have to love 'em!

Thursday, September 29, 2005


This is my latest project. A series of five paintings to display at a co -opera event coming to our little town of Callington. The venue will be the Dog n Ute Hotel and the theme, naturally enough.......... operetic drinking songs. Nov 26th 2005
Friday kiddy lit.......................

Have You Ever Seen a Goanna?

Have you ever seen a goanna
running up a tree?
One day when I stood very still
one tried to run up me!

Sunday, September 25, 2005

It's About Time

This is Timmy. Previously named Con of the conversation pieces. He has been restrctured into a clock for an exhibition called 'It's About Time.' The word 'time' is actually Tim with an e = Timmy. He has no attire to determine to which time period he belongs so he is essentially 'timeless'. But he is leaning forward over the chair constantly looking toward the future which is the only direction in which time moves. Furthermore, he is staring off into the distance with is single eye which is of course a clock! He is the ultimate 'time piece!'

kiddy lit; Hotdogs

Have you ever had a hotdog
that you wore instead of ate?
The type that makes a gooey mess;
the type your parents hate.

Did the tomato sauce run over you
and all over your clothes
and make a big, red, sticky river
from your chin down to your toes?

Did you have another,then another,
then another one?
Did you make a super hotdog mess?
Did you have a heap of fun?

Well if you've had a hotdog
that you wore instead of ate;
the messy, gooey, icky type,
the type your parents hate.
Consider yourself lucky
'cause when all is said and done,
the one that doesn't make a mess
is the one that's ...JUST NO FUN!!!!

Monday, September 19, 2005

mug shot

See very recent picture of yours truly (19th Sept). Taken last night for an exhibition catalogue mug shot. I don't use make-up these days. I use spackle!

Sunday, September 18, 2005

talk back radio

Here in Adelaide we have a few great programmes on the ABC radio. You can always tell when I have been spending long hours in my studio because that's when I tend to talk about things I've heard on the radio. ABC droppings so to speak.Well, its mainly Matthew A and David B that have me stop what I'm doing to jot down some 'roo droppings.' Hmmm!( That's why I like radio so much.You can keep on working and still ....... these guys mess up that theory a bit.) It's a talkback show so you keep up with all the quacky as well as intellgent droppings of other Adelaidites. Very eyeopening. Anyhow, the other day they had people call in with metaphors or funny sayings. Every day depictions to add colour to everyday situations. Well ! They had more calls than ever for this. Aussies have always used metaphor and simile quite naturally in their every day speech and its nice to know this habit is alive and well. Here are just a few from the callers. Some are a little bawdy of course.........
As popular as a turd in a punch bowl.
As full as a Pommie's complaint box
Excuse me for reaching I just got off the ship.
See ya later. Thanks for the warning.
This one was from an Indian man. 'Hikum Flunky'.Which roughly translates to " he had a sudden rush of shit to the brain.My personal favorite!
And now for the winner; one aimed at those younger than you who think they know it all............. I was in Bagdad when you were still in your Dad's bag.
Eventually you have to get a little bit 'affected' by listening to talk back radio.

Friday, September 16, 2005

friday and kiddy lit

Seems once a teacher always a teacher. Many years ago I tried my best to leave the teaching profession. I worked in the hospitality industry waitressing and bartending, I painted condominiums and shovelled snow,earned an art degree (BFA) and became an AOT (artist among other things) and a 'story teller.' I saw story telling and the performing arts as just another form of art only now the medium becomes 'me'! Lot cheaper than paint I have to say. So on the surface all this looks like I've successful made my way out the chalky game. On closer examination though one might see that story telling and performing arts is not just another form of art but rather another form of............teaching! Maybe I never wanted to get out (yes I did, yes it did) but rather had to figure out away of doing it to accommodate my failing health. Of course this is still really exhausting but in developing routines that work on stage maybe eventually they will find their way into children's books. This seems to me a natural progression. Still I find myself back relieving in the Kindy! Just in the blood I suppose.
So every Friday I am going to post a little piece of kiddy lit. from a series of little poems I am working on call Have You Ever? Here's my very first one..............
Have you ever had the Hiccups?

Have you ever had the hiccups
and they didn't go away
'though you got inside a paper bag
and stayed in there all day?

Did someone say
just hold your breath
until your face turns blue
or drink water hanging upside down?
An impossible thing to do!

Did you ever think that witches
sent them to you as a curse?
Then realise that thinking about them
only made them worse!

Did you ever have a hiccup and a cough
that came together
Or a hic and then a cough
and then a sneeze.......
GOSH, GOLLY! Have you ever?

If you've had the hiccups
and they didn't go away
and you had them for an hour
or even half a day

Don't complain or feel too bad
You may have cause to laugh
if you stop and think
just what might happen
to a hiccupping........GIRAFFE!!

Ronda Eden

Thursday, September 15, 2005

droppings on mernie

I spent about 13 years in the USA where, after sorting through a good number of 'unsuitables' I found an excellent husband. When I first spotted Mernie he was shovelling manure on the ranch that he owns in Wyoming and I knew that I just had to have him. So I bundled him up in my suitcase an took him home to Australia. I was surprised at how easy it was to get him through customs. The only thing they absolutely insisted upon was giving his boots a good scub!
So I got myself my cowboy.Only now he wears an Akubra on his head and Rossi boots on his feet. Of course we got ourselves a couple of horses just to make sure that customs had some boots to clean on the next trip.

promotion to kindergarten

Lately I've been picking up a little relieving work teaching at the Kindy across the road. Well teaching is not exactly the right description. Those kids know it all already. They have completely their own agenda. I have actually been enjoying it in spite of the fact that I'm not really up to it health wise at the moment. I don't know exactly why I prefer it to the 'big school'. Maybe its because there are not as many of 'them' and there are more of 'us'! Or maybe its because I'm only there for a half a day at a time and can go and collapse in the afternoon.Or maybe its because you get to talk to the kids without any real expectation concerning the outcome on their part.I like the idea of guiding rather than moulding. Oh except in my studio where I love to mould and do it quite often.

supposed to be in the last one..oops

promotion to kindergarten

My First Blog

Actually Mernie is doing this while I think of something to write.