Thursday, December 19, 2013

Ethnic Christmas

This year our Ethnic dinner plans fell to Betty and she booked us in to the Christmas dinner at the Lyceum Club.
It was really great evening. They have the most wonderful collection of Art works to enjoy as we sat and sipped champagne on the verandah over looking the melbourne Club.

Wendy and the Xmas tree 
Our wine and the Lyceum Club's Logo
We are not allowed to take photos in the rooms, but I took the opportunity to get some snaps of the Melbourne Club's grounds next door. They have the most ENORMOUS Plane tree!  My only chance of seeing it . (women not allowed)
The rear Garden 
trying to see through the tree
Their wall on Ridgeway Place
We had a great dinner and a great start to Christmas.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Family Christmas

Because I am heading out next week and an early celebration means we all get to see Bridie Sean and Dylan for Xmas gifts and company.So Andrew and Lynne again hosted a fabulous dinner, HUGE ham (everyone able to take 2-3 kgs of ham home!!) and a turkey that was very successful, based on a New Idea recipe.

The Christmas tree and lights.
The area in Patterson Lakes is locally famous for its Xmas lights Andrew and Lynne get into the tasteful mode, Unlike a neighbour who is so Over the Top!
Their immediate next door neighbours did a low key one, A rope of lights spelling "ditto"
This year Dylan liked A & L's reindeer with nodding heads!
It was a lovely mild day so Sean was kept busy negotiating with Dylan about where he was going to be playing.

The swivel stools were a great hit! And they go up and down!!
He quickly found the dog Monty who, while startling him with her sudden movements, did not scare him despite her size. Imagine a dog coming up to your shoulder height!
Monty has a soft toy she carries around. The current one is a tiger. So Dylan threw it for her and when she pounced on it Dylan yelled "YES!!!" This kept him busy for quite a while.
He had a giggling fit (after the fright) when Andrew popped the champagne cork and it went flying over to the Xmas tree!
Monty getting ready for the throw
Then he found the light bays on the deck and found they were a perfect fit!

The pool was GREAT!
Lunch was delicious with a really nice pumpkin dish we all liked.
Dylan especially loved the duck fat roasted potatoes!!
Nick and Kate were well and great company.
Lynne entertaining us with description of how  Nicholas (friend )
signed his name same as her Nick!
Andrew excelled himself again with the dessert
The picture says it all !!
Raspberry Meringue layers
We really enjoyed it but loved especially Dylan's enjoyment of it.

At one point he got a blob on his upper left arm and had us in stitches as he tried to lick it off while holding a laden spoon in the air!!
We had Xmas presents after lunch and Dylan was very happy to open them all for us.
We all then retired to the pool side while Bridie and Kate took Dylan swimming. We had some trouble with his new water wings so Andrew got the baby life jacket out, and he loved this, refusing to take it off
His latest phrase is 'I do it myself" So Kate and Bridie were only allowed to hover as he mastered getting around.
He was excited when Kate went underwater and he couldn't see her!


Lazing on the lounge was appealing as well.

A really lovely day!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Pom Pom Party

While I was cooking and preparing the deck, the rain came and went. It was sun then rain then cloud then sun etc. So didn't set up till the last minute  but with a mild 19 degrees we had a pleasant time on the deck with a few friends. Champagne, home made babagannoush, egg and bacon tartlets and some olives and nibbles we spent a pleasant few hours.
Spencer spent his time under the table keeping an eye on any dropped morsels.
Family crystal and the blossom 
Some food on offer

Mary and Margaret (a little blurred ...the champagne?)

Toasting the blossom!
As we explored the garden, Mary pointed out my veges that I had not inspected recently, and there nested in the leaves were Broccoli, cabbage and Cauli (a little under par).
two separate broccoli. Soup coming up!

my little cabbage (must make some Japanese fried noodle dish)
the under par cauli
I also noticed how enormous this bush( forget its name) had grown. It was the smaller and very slow growing of two I planted years ago 
the enormous growth in last 6 months
Compared to this half size one

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Pom Pom Glory

It must be all the rain, but the African Pom Pom tree (Dais Continofolia) is at its glorious best.
It caught me unawares!  I could smell it from the front door as I got home last week, and sure enough the North side was in bloom
But it just kept coming out more than I have ever seen it!
Seemed too late int he year to have a Blossom Viewing Party, but Celia suggested I have an impromptu party If you can come you come!


So I sent some invitations out and hopefully will have a few to sip a wine under the tree. (weather forecast good!)
So we are going to enjoy it on Tuesday evening
Abundant bloom at the roof line.