Thursday, June 26, 2014

Meeting Glenn McGrath!

In early April this year Farmer Phil and I were invited to a McGrath Foundation dinner and fundraiser presented by the Commonwealth Bank.  Glenn McGrath met everyone as they arrived with a handshake or kiss and hug.  He spoke for more than an hour on everything from his upbringing on the family farm, to his illustrious cricketing career, meeting Jane his wife, then Jane's devastating cancer diagnosis and treatment, the setting up of the McGrath Foundation, the birth of his children through to Jane's very sad death, and then the meeting of the new love of his life Sarah.  He posed for a photo with everyone there on the night and a considerable amount of money was raised to fund more breast care nurses in the community.  It was a fascinating insight into his life and distinguished career. And what a wonderful, caring man he is - we all have a bit of a crush on Glenn McGrath now!!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014


A few weeks ago Farmer Phil and I took a trip to Melbourne to catch up with Emma for a couple of days and see The Rocky Horror Show.  Wow - what a great production and the cast were fantastic!  Craig McLachlan was so good as Frank n Furter!  Farmer Phil had no idea what the storyline was, so we had to explain it to him!

We also did a tour of the MCG which is really interesting - an iconic Melbourne spot.  Farmer Phil and I had done the tour years ago before they pulled down the original members stand and did the latest redevelopment.  It's well worth a look if you're in Melbourne.

Entry into the National Sports Museum is included in the MCG tour and it has some fantastic exhibits of all sorts of sports.  They had a special exhibition on medals this time which was fascinating.

So much to do and see and eat and drink in Melbourne!!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Ryan's American Adventure 2014

Ryan left for his 6 month trip to Orlando, Florida on Mothers Day with 3 other ski bums from Australia.  He will train the whole time he's there.  It's a great life he has!

The Aussie crew with Kyle their Kiwi coach for the next 3 months.  Beautiful weather everyday!

Cropping 2014

When Ryan broke his ankle skiing we then had plenty of spare time to get ready for our cropping season.  He needed surgery to remove some floating bone and about a 6 week recovery period.  He missed out on skiing at the NSW State Titles and the Nationals in Darwin.  

We got started cropping early with Ryan able to man the seeding rig.  We had a smooth 6 weeks cropping which was great!  There was some good rain before, during and after so we are very optimistic for a good year!

Moomba Masters Waterski Tournament

This year Ryan qualified to ski in the very prestigious Moomba Masters which is the biggest professional tournament in Australia.  It's held on the Yarra River in Melbourne and thousands of people come to watch.

Unfortunately things didn't go well for Ryan with him breaking his ankle in the Night Jump event.  He'd never jumped at  night so it was a big learning curve for him.

His good attitude will see him back there next year bigger and better!

Sunday, March 2, 2014


While in Melbourne we saw Grease the Musical.  Grease is my favourite movie of all time - I remember seeing it at the Wagga Drive-In with dad and my sister Lisa in our mum's car - a mini!!  I was only about 7 or 8 and I think most of it must've went over my head but we just loved Olivia Newton-John!!

Rob Mills as Danny and Gretel Scarlett as Sandy. 

Greased Lightning!

Summer Nights!

We had fantastic seats!  Todd McKenney was the Teen Angel, Bert Newton was Vince Fontaine and Anthony Callea played Johnny Casino.  It was a fantastic production - go and see it if it's in a theatre near you!

Emma is off to Univertsity!

As soon as we returned from New Zealand, Emma and I were off to Melbourne for a day of orientation and filling out forms!  Then a week later it was pack the car with all her stuff and get her set up ready to start uni.

Emma is doing a Diploma of Specialist Make-up Services.  Which means she wants to be a movie/special effects make-up artist!

We found some fantastic student accommodation for her in Footscray which is about a 15 minute bus/train ride into her King Street campus in Melbourne's CBD.  It's called Victoria Place and they are all individual studio apartments with their own kitchen and bathroom/laundry.  Perfect!

Getting settled in!  Emma loves her course, has met the other residents, is looking for a part time job and is generally loving Melbourne!

New Zealand

We've had a very busy first two months of 2014!

We didn't fit our annual waterskiing holiday to Renmark in this year because Ryan was selected to ski for Australia in the Under 21 team.  It was for the annual Aussie/Kiwi Challenge and this year it was held near Ashburton in New Zealand's South Island.

The whole Aussie team ready to board the plane at Sydney Airport - U 14's, U 17's and U 21's.

Team photo with the Kiwi's.

On the final morning we woke to snow on the mountains!  It is supposed to be Summer!  We left home when it was over 40 degrees to snow!!

Scenic drive up to Mt Hutt, a popular snow skiing field.

A few of the Aussie kids had never seen or touched snow before so this trip was very special.

Of course a snow fight happened as soon as the mini buses stopped!

Everyone was in the fight!

Official team photo's taken in the snow in Summer for a waterski tournament!!

It was so bright they couldn't see.

Ryan's Under 21 team - Olivia, Cam, Jayme, Ryan, Anthea, Trent, Jacinta and Team Manager Griff

Still having fun in the snow.

Lots of great photo opportunities with the magnificent scenery!

We were quite high up and you could see for miles over the patchwork Canterbury Plains.

An Aussie/Kiwi challenge tradition - the Under 21's boat race!  Australia won!!

Ryan sculling his beer!

The Under 21 Kiwi's and Aussie's with their medals at the presentation night.  Australia won the team gold in the Under 14's, the Under 17's and the Under 21's - a clean sweep!

Back to Christchurch for a quick look around the CBD and the earthquake one.  It was very sad to see it a long way off being back to what it was before the earthquake.  Lots of rubble, containers everywhere, lots of machinery and workers, but still looking like a ghost town.

Broken buildings!

Vacant blocks of land where the fallen buildings have been cleared away.

An ingenious idea - the container shopping mall!

An outdoor church!

Ryan flew home from Christchurch with the rest of the Aussie team while Farmer Phil and I flew to Auckland and spent 3 nights visiting my old school friends.   Photo taken from the Skytower in Auckland CBD of the Harbour Bridge.

Andrea and Farmer Phil at One Tree Hill where the only tree fell down a few years ago and now there is an argument about what sort of tree to plant to replace it!                                      .

Andrea and I at One Tree Hill with the Skytower between our heads.  We met at the start of intermediate school in 1980 and still keep in touch!

Andrea and her gorgeous twins Alexander and Max!  They are very precious boys after many years of trying to have a family!

Joanne, Adrienne and I out for dinner.  We met at the start of high school in 1982 - can't believe that was 32 years ago!!