About Me

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NSW, Australia
I'm made it past 50! married for over half my life, have 3 kids all grown and I'm loving this part of my life.I was a nurse in my younger days but an unhealthy dose of rheumatoid arthritis put a damper on my career,so I'm at home with the internet.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

roots and branches

I'm descended from convicts!
My earliest ancestor to Australia was Eleanor Davis born in 1769 in Covent Garden England.
I think Eleanor was a bit of a rebel in her day.
She was meant to be childminding for a day for a fee of sixpence but while there stole various items including a man's coat, a waistcoat, 2 pairs satin breeches, a body vest, 1 shirt, 12 plates, a dish, 4 salt shakers, a mustard pot and sundry other things. Total value of 23 shillings and three pence. She went straight to the pawnshop and got 18 pence for them . She also received 7 years transportation when found guilty of the charge.
Silly girl spent her 18pence on grog and a carriage ride and was caught riding up and down the main street intoxicated.The little girl she was minding told her parents exactly where Nelly had got to.I think she had the little girl with her at the pawn shop!!!
She spent some time aboard one of the dreadful prison hulks then was transported to Australia on the 3rd fleet.
In Australia they were waiting anxiously and impatiently for the 3rd fleet as major flooding had drowned the crops and there was famine.
She arrived in port Jackson Sydney in 1791, the journey took 143 days...imagine that! It wasn't an uneventful trip for her as she arrived pregnant!
A few months after she arrived she married a lifer Alexander Seaton, he had stolen cattle.The ship board pregnancy was full term and Mary Anne(the name of the ship) was born, but it is thought that she died as there are no other records of her.She had a daughter Martha with Alex in 1794.
Her marriage to Alexander hit a snag in 1795 and she moved in with Jacob Russell. They had daughter, Elizabeth, a year later.
This photo is Elizabeth. Many moons later.
Alexander moved to Tasmania with his daughter Martha where he remarried even though he was still married to Eleanor. He was shot and killed in a pub brawl by a soldier,in argument over a woman in 1817.
So that left Eleanor free to marry and she promptly married Jacob.
Jacob had been convicted for house burglary and spent 4 YEARS in the hulks before being transported to Australia in the 3rd fleet.He had been assigned to the superintendent of convicts, working on cultivation of crops and only 3 years later he was granted his certificate of freedom(he had to remain in the area).He recieved a 30 acre land grant from the Leut Governor and a further 30 acres granted a few years later. Jacob and Eleanor became respected settlers.

Unfortunately as many women did in the harsh conditions,Eleanor continued to drink heavily and died suddenly in 1824 "srangled in liquor" at 55yrs old.
Elizabeth in the photo married Robert Sherringham when she was 15 years old....he was 30!!!
Robert had been an apprentice cordwainer...this is a shoemaker...I did not know that, so there you go! He stole shoemaking or cordwaining? items from his employer and sentenced to 7 yrs transportation.He was eventually given his certificate of emancipation(like a pardon but had to stay in the area) and 3 land grants.
Elizabeth and Robert had 12 children.
In 1828 he is listed in the muster as having 17 acres of cleared and cultivated land 4 horses,16 cattle and a govt. servant(convict) Andrew Mahon.
In 1834 Andrew received his conditional Pardon, left Robert and took Elizabeth with him!!! By this time Elizabeth was 38 and Andrew 37.There must have been some issue with Robert as at this time her father Jacob went to court and gave her a parcel of land, very unusual in that day and age.

Elizabeth had 5 more children with Andrew! 17 children in total.If I still had my uterus it would be aching in protest.
She died in 1878 age 82 and Andrew died aged 92.
One of their children was Catherine born in 1837 when Elizabeth was 41(she had 2 more after this one).Catherine was married twice. Her 2nd partner was Joseph Shelton ,She already had one child to her first hubby. It appears they split up but he didn't die and they didn't divorce so they had their family of 8 children and then married in 1911, when she was 72!!!Better late than never!
Now we are getting closer to me.
Their daughter Ester Ann was one of 8 children born to them.She was born in 1868 and married Francis Riley Gavin (Garry)in 1889 and that couple are my great grandparents.

Ester had 11 children,she died in 1909 when my grandfather Willim Charles (Charlie) was only 3 yrs old.
She also had a new baby when she died.She was 41.

The eldest of the girls,Elizabeth(Lizzie) promised her mother she would look after the children and she did this her whole life, living 2 doors from Charlie even in her late years. She never married.She was 17 years old when her mother died.A remarkable girl.There were 7 children younger than her to look after, the eldest 15 and the youngest not yet 2.She was very old when I was a child and I liken her to Aunt Clara in Bewitched.

These photos are of Aunt Liz's home and Charlie my grandfathers home,where my mum grew up.It was a slab hut constructrion and I loved going here for visits.

Charlies place is still standing but it now has no walls and is pretty much a car port. Aunt Liz's was pulled down about 20 years ago and Mc Mansion is in it's place.

This is Charlie my grandfather and my grandmother Emily.She died when I was 3 years old so I only have one memory of her. I was helping wipe up the dishes and dropped a cup.Her father was a Scotsman. Most of her grandchildren and great grandchildren have her round face and have trouble with their weight. Thanks grandma!

Emily and Charlie had 7 children the youngest stillborn. There are only 2 still living. My mums not one of them. RIP mum.

This is my mum and dad at their engagement party in about 1960. I came along in 1963.

And there is more... Francis Rileys grandparents were convicts too.......but I will let you off, if you've read this far you deserve mercy .

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Random animal tails

My daughter rang about 1am, "someone left a horse in my yard!
She had heard a rock being thrown at her door and went outside to find a miniature horse that someone had tied to the gate. Must have given her a fright,the last time she saw a horse it had taken off on her and she fell and broke her hip,at least this one was to small to do any damage,not that she would have climbed aboard.......I don't think......there was the incident with the skateboard a couple of months ago.She decided at 21 yrs of age to try skateboarding,I'm pretty sure this lasted all of 5 minutes... before she came a cropper and broke her elbow. But..I digress...back to the horsey.About an hour later she rang again(lucky I'm a night owl up reading blogs) ' 2 drunks just stole the stolen horse!!!'

It's a very small town, a horse,even a miniature one will be noticed quickly so I'm sure it will be back with it's owner tomorrow some time. Horses and cars are alike,very recognisable,there's zero in the way of car theft here..I mean where are you going to drive it?A friends? The conversation would be something along the lines of "why are you driving your cousins' girlfriends' sister in laws' car?"

I remembered another animal incident tonight.
It was a long time ago.
Last year.
I set fire to the cats tail.
Not on purpose,but by the look Kitty gave me I don't think she believed me. I was having a leisurely cigarette when the phone rang,so i bent down to put it out in the ashtray,I must have got up suddenly because the cat got a fright and dashed in front of me at the same time. I headed in the front door and she dashed in ahead of me.
I could smell something .
yep definately smoke.
As i headed through the house the youngest sang out "why is there smoke coming from the cat??? WTF??? sure enough there was smoke pouring from her tail so i grabbed her and dunked her tail in the cats water. There was a phhssssss sound .....and a dreadful smell.

Cats hair smells remarkably like human hair when burnt. Interesting fact.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Which way is North?

These are answers to questions sent to an Australian tourism site........I doubt these were the published answers !!!!

Q: Does it ever get windy in Australia ? I have never seen it rain on TV, how do the

plants grow? ( UK ).

A: We import all plants fully grown and then just sit around watching them die.

Q: Will I be able to see kangaroos in the street? ( USA )

A:Depends how much you've been drinking.

Q:I want to walk from Perth to Sydney - can I follow the railroad tracks? ( Sweden)

A: Sure, it's only three thousand miles, take lots of water.

Q: Are there any ATMs (cash machines) in Australia ? Can you send me a list of them in Brisbane , Cairns , Townsville and Hervey Bay ? ( UK)

A: What did your last slave die of?

Q:Can you give me some information about hippo racing in Australia ? ( USA )

A: A-Fri-ca is the big triangle shaped continent south of Europe

Aus-tra-lia is that big island in the middle of the Pacific which does not

... Oh forget it. Sure, the hippo racing is every Tuesday night in Kings Cross. Come


Q:Which direction is North in Australia ? (USA )

A: Face south and then turn 180 degrees. Contact us when you get here and we'll send the rest of the directions.

Q: Can I bring cutlery into Australia ? ( UK )

A:Why? Just use your fingers like we do...

Q:Can you send me the Vienna Boys' Choir schedule? ( USA )

A: Aus-tri-a is that quaint little country bordering Ger-man-y, which is

> Oh forget it. Sure, the Vienna Boys Choir plays every Tuesday night in Kings Cross,straight after the hippo races. Come naked.

Q: Can I wear high heels in Australia ? ( UK )

A: You are a British politician, right?

Q:Are there supermarkets in Sydney and is milk available all year round? (Germany)

A: No, we are a peaceful civilization of vegan hunter/gatherers.

Milk is illegal.

Q:Please send a list of all doctors in Australia who can Dispense rattlesnake serum. (USA )

A: Rattlesnakes live in A-meri-ca which is where YOU come from.

All Australian snakes are perfectly harmless, can be safely handled and make good


Q:I have a question about a famous animal in Australia , but I forget its name. It's a kind of bear and lives in trees. ( USA )

A: It's called a Drop Bear. They are so called because they drop out of Gum trees and eat the brains of anyone walking underneath them. You can scare them off by spraying yourself with human urine before you go out walking.

Q:I have developed a new product that is the fountain of youth. Can you tell me where I can sell it in Australia ? ( USA)

A: Anywhere significant numbers of Americans gather.

Q:Do you celebrate Christmas in Australia ? ( France )

A: Only at Christmas.

Q: Will I be able to speak English most places I go? ( USA )

A: Yes, but you'll have to learn it first

Saturday, January 15, 2011

no blogging today

Sunday, such a lazy day.
Lazy day in my house pretty much everyday. ....yaaaawwwn

Rest is not much fun without recreation, need both the R and the R.

Seems the less I do the less I want to do.

Once upon a time , I had 3 kids under 5, a job and hubby that only helped during the hours I was at work. I got everything done...except ironing, had a huge pile, but I gave the pretense of an ironing pile away when the youngest was 2 . I used to fit so much in a day and be up early for the next.

Rheumatoid Arthritis hit when the youngest (now 19) was around 2. Slowly but surely, I gave up work, hanging washing etc , doing what I could do through the pain and still get the kids where they needed to go for school and sport,hubby went back to work so keeping up with the kids was a full time job and somedays it fell to friends to get them here there and everywhere.

I've improved so much from those days, have my mobility back and I am mostly pain free, but I have a lingering cantbebtheredness. The kids have grown and 2 of them have left home and the 3rd soon to leave, so theres not a huge amount to be done anymore.

Its the busyness of it all I miss, people coming, going, doing things. I feel like this year I kind of fell into a timewarp, walking down the up escalator, not going anywhere. So this year I contemplate going back and redoing my nursing training, it's such a huge commitment, I'm not sure about it,it's 18 months hard work. I needed a bomb under me to get me to finish the Real Estate Course, it's no where near as interesting as nursing but can it compete with blogging and facebook???? The washing up, cooking, answering the phone, feeding the dog can't!!!!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

28 yrs and counting

28 years ago today I was all aquiver in my bridal attire.
28 years, I'd be out now If I'd knocked him off ...
This first photo was taken the first time we went out on our own, we had been out a couple of times with friends. I was 18 in this pic.

Here I am in wedding gown just over a year later. Would you believe it was 42 deg Celsius that day..hottest day in 100yrs back in this dress. The dress wasn't meant to be the replica of Princess Anne's dress. From the skirt and train it was, but it was supposed to be a mix of 2 different patterns and should have had short puff sleeve trimmed with the lace and a scoop neck....but the seamstress, my mums friend.......forgot! So I sweltered.But then the guys had suits and ties,so I can't complain too much.
The actual wedding was in a community centre we hired for the night. We had a smorgesboard instead of a formal do. stupidly... we had bombe alaska for my friend had a gorgeous wedding, all the frills,almost gothic romantic setting, formal dining......but boring as watching paint dry,so we chose to have a party atmosphere and it was. Nobody wanted to go home except for the heat.It was so hot we ran out of beer and soft drink and so the hat went around.
Looking back at the photos today I remembered how much time and planning it took to get that one day organised, and now I hardly ever look at the photos. One thing struck me though is that many of the people there are not with us today, 2 uncles, 2 sisters in law, my mother, all 3 grandparents and several others.
Where has the time gone? work,kids,moving house 15 times and after the kids start school the days and weeks start to run into one another.
It hasn't all been plain sailing,we've had a few rough patches. I'm messy he's not.I'm outgoing ,he's not. We've had illness with RA for me and a 2 yr stint of blindness for him. We have had the kids with surgeries, the usual illnesses and tantrums, broken bones, car accidents and gender changes. We mostly get through it by yelling and then laughing, a cup of tea and good lie down as they say.
This is us in Bali Sept last year. Those orangutans are soooo cute. In 2013 it will be our 30th anniversary and my 50th, planning to go to Bali to celebrate.

If you've go this far down my memory lane, thanks, its nice to reminisce on special days.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Pick me! Pick me!

oooh oooh ooh I won something!
Not sure my family would agree with the Irresistibly Sweet..........oh wait's the blog ,not me !

Thanks HEAPS to Lindylou@the gigglefest.Read Lindy's blog with a Scottish Accent, it's even funnier. Seriously Lindy has a lot on her plate but writes with humour... and a scottish accent:)

The award has a cost which is to tell you 5 guilty pleasures I enjoy and pass the award on to 3 more bloggers.......It would be easier the other way around!

5 guilty pleasures

1..all winter we were trying to use what little wood we had slowly and save my guilty pleasure for winter was .....eating, reading,blogging,watching tv all from my bed with the electric blanket on 8.

2...reading a good book from cover to cover in one sitting,only stopping to pee. houswwork smoushwork~

3... I like to play the pokies,even if its only 2 dollars , if I see a poker machine I have to put a dollar in it.

4...writing,blogging and facebook.........i should be doing housework...ahh but housework smoushwork....

5...caramello chocolate.......every now and then I can eat a whole family block of cadburys caramello chocolate.....usually with guilty pleasure #2

I'm passing my award on to these 3. It was so hard to choose.

I. It's nepotism but I'm going to choose my Tdaughter Chloe's blog @tggalaxyguide. 1 because she is gorgeous and brave.2 because it's an interesting blog with things shes learned along the way about transition and it might help others in her situation and just bring awareness.

2. nari @ narislife because I love her sense of humour. Shes very funny .

3.its a tie for 3rd. first is another funny one Ami @ami.mental and one I find inspiring as she has battled not only with a hoarding problem, 2 disabled kids and firbromyalgia but finds...wait....makes time to write an interesting blog confessionsofaclosethoarder
thanks again Lindylou xxx

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Wishing You The Very Worst of Luck

May peace break into your home and may thieves come to steal your debts. May the pockets of your jeans become a magnet for $100 bills. May love stick to your face like Vaseline and may laughter assault your lips! May happiness slap you across the face and may your tears be that of joy. May the problems you had,... forget your home address! PEACE, JOY AND HAPPINESS TO YOU