Karen In Sydney, Australia

1920s Morley Style

Embee Louise

In The Navy (with Brisbane in the background)

19 June, 2011

Sore backs, Kangaroo Paws, Mountains and a man in a dress....

Well last weekend I somehow managed to hurt my back in two places. The lower back, I have no idea whatsoever, the top left hand side was picking up Embee to bath her and turning to the left!

Now let me just say that to say "I have hurt my back" sounds like something an old person would say! A few people have said maybe it's because it's cold.... let us go with that! hehehe.

The good news is that after some rest and a few Nurofen plus I am all good. I tell you what, it makes you wonder how people live with pain every day! I am such a baby.... Thank goodness I had Nurse Embee looking after me!

A good friend this week reminded me of a weekend I had away a couple of years ago. Got me thinking and I think what I am going to try and do, is drag out a story from the Morley Vault every week, where I would like to share stories from the past.... with you.

So buckle yourself in and here we go....

So a couple of years ago a friend and myself wanted to go away for the weekend, up to the hinterland of the Sunshine Coast, in Winter, for a lovely country weekend. You know fireplaces, spa's etc.

Now this friend was a woman, before you get all excited on me! And do you know how hard it is to find somewhere that caters for two people sleeping separately!! Anyway we found a place and my friend picked me up from my work on a Friday afternoon in her brand new second hand car that she had just purchased that day!

We arrived around 7pm, from memory and went straight to the restaurant for a lovely dinner. My friend had too much wine with her dinner so asked if I could drive her car (remember it's brand new...) down to our cabin. Ohhh did I tell you this place is on the side of a steep mountain?

So I said okkkkkk, I mean it wasn't far. Not that we had been there yet as remember we went straight to dinner before checking in. So we get into the car, it's pitch black, I have the lights on high beam and we are trying to work out which way to drive out. My friend says it's that way and points straight ahead, so off we drive but I am not so sure. Now I am quite short! I knowww I write like I am really tall hehe. And so it takes me a bit to look over the dashboard etc. She says to turn left, I hesitate and say are you sureeeeeeee? She says yes, I inch ahead and that's when I see IT! Ohhh yeah its a giant staircase that YOU WALK DOWN the mountain on.... NOT DRIVE! OMG OMG OMG, so I stop! THANK GOD! And my friend is laughing, laughing (remember she drank all that wine with dinner) and my heart is going a million miles an hour.....

So thanks to ME, I find the way out of the car park and take the winding track down to the bottom of the mountain and find our cabin.

She is very nice and gives me the main bedroom, which has glass windows all around.... ohhh sooo nice! Or so I think. Later that night we go to bed, she is in the other bedroom and is out like a light (thanks to the wine). And eventually I fall asleep. Oh, did I mention, no electric blanket, no spare blankets....

I wake up about two hours later. My head is FROZEN! I open my suitcase and wear 50 layers of clothing. I'm still cold. So I go out into the lounge room and drag the lounge over to the pot belly stove. It's 2am and I have never lit a fire in my life. So there I am, wearing my suitcase, frozen, not happy, frozen and trying to light a fire.

My friend wakes up and comes out and cannot stop laughing at me. You see I got the main bedroom because I wanted a ceiling fan incase I got HOT! I knowwwwww I'm a dick.

She went back to bed and left me trying to warm up on the couch. In the end she was kind enough to swap bedrooms as her's was warmer as it had wooden walls, not windows all around it.

Oh and did I mention I saw a mouse run over the floor earlier in the night. The place was soooo very depressing and smelt all musty and like something out of the early 80's with regards to it's decor.

The next day we checked out and asked for our money back for the next night. I just couldn't stay there another night, for some reason the place just really brought me down and I think if you can't get warm well for me I was just plain crabby! hehehe.

My biggest regret was that I left that poor little mouse in that miserable cottage. Poor little thing....

I have only just heard that it has new owners as of a few months ago and they have spent a fortune doing the place up! So maybe that mouse is now living up big! I can only hope.....

The End.

Now back to the current week.

I was also surprised by a little package in the mail! Noooo it wasn't a love letter from Buble, that was the week before.... LOL. I received in the mail a framed certificate from the Queensland Premier! It was a Certificate of appreciation for and I quote "for your hard work and dedication to the people of Queensland during the recent devastation of the Queensland floods and Cyclone Yasi.

I have to say I was pleasantly surprised as I didn't help out to receive any certificate etc. and I have to say I was the one that got more out of the experience.... But at the same time as being a little embarrassed about it, it was nice to have that acknowledgement.

On the way home from the Post Office I thought about the people that I met during this time. I haven't thought about them much lately so it was nice to think of them and I hope that they are all doing ok.

On the work front we had a few interesting things go down this week.

First of all lay your eyes on this:

Yes you saw right, it's a Kangaroo Paw with a bottle opener attached at the end, encased in a frame! As you do..... it seems my section at work won a bid on this lovely item and we will have this in our office for a whole 12 months! Aren't we lucky.... Poor little Kangaroo :(

We had a visit from Toby another dog that one of the guys at work owns! He is very cute!

And Seamus got a new bed for work! It's a tough life you know all day working with me! A boy needs his rest!!

And the wonderful Andrew brought me in the most amazing chicken pie for lunch! He even heated it up and brought it to me at my desk..... TRUE STORY!!! Thanks Andrew!

Embee had an up and down week too, literally! The other morning as I walked past the visitor's bedroom I found this sight:

If you look really closely you'll see the pillow having a smoke! Yep you got it Groover's, the Visitor's Bed Pillow and Miss Embee Louise had some hot lovin and I just happened to walk past afterwards... THANK GOD! They were both exhausted but fulfilled hehehe.

Later in the week we ran out of Dog Biscuits and I managed to find one tin of Chump Dog Food in the kitchen cupboard! So for two mornings in a row Embee had real life dog food (not the usual dog biscuits) in a bowl complete with two schmackos delicately placed either side, you know like a wafers in a ice-cream sundae! tee hee.

We had my Mum over for the weekend and I have to say we had a really lovely visit! I took her shopping for winter clothes, as you do and one thing I am not really into is shopping!!! But we got it done and I survived the day.....

That night I attended a special dinner with some lovely ladies and this was the table setting!

This morning we went down to the other end of our road, it's very long..... and had something to eat whilst watching the ocean, the pelicans, sea gulls! I had a 60 cent bet with Baby Jake that the Pelican's would eat some chips..... I LOST! :(

We had such a lovely time that I completely forgot to take a pic, sorry kids.

Then in the afternoon I went to my friend Karen's Candle Party! I worked with Karen many years ago in the Tourism Industry. And here is the inside goss: looks like instead of a 11night cruise for New Years Eve this year, we could be heading up to Hamilton Island! Maybe I should ring them ahead of time and warn them that "The Two Kazza's" are on the way and as my Grandad used to say when I arrived: Batten down the hatches! hehehe.

So it's a little cold here tonight in Brisbane. Some people are really babies..... others just live in front of the heater.

Some real hip and happening kids wear yellow beanies.....

But some, well let's just say tonight I thought for a sec that I had a Scotsman in my lounge room. As I type this is the get up that Baby Jake is wearing in his car whilst he has gone out to get dinner.

I can only hope he doesn't get pulled over by the police! Would make for a lovely MUG SHOT!!!

Well kids we have come to the end of another Morley week! I know it was exciting wasn't it hehehe.

Keep Warm or Cool depending, on where you are!


Me xxx

Jake just arrived home, outfit in tact! Phewwwww.....

12 June, 2011

Frozen Morley's plus the odd snake skin!

Well winter is truly here in Brisbane, Queensland. We have had a mighty cold week, and of course we are def babies here in Brisbane. It only has to get a little cold and we are all freaking out and need our jumper’s hehehe.

Took me quite a few days to get rid of my “sea legs” from the cruise last week. God help me at the end of the year when it’s an 11 night cruise!

I passed my probation this week too. They only do two months in this company, so can’t complain with that. Nice to know they want to keep me! My boss told me it’s like a cult here as it is such a specialist field. So I am now a proud member of a cult! ☺

We had a big Admin Team meeting at work this week and a few staff flew into Brisbane for it. We also went out for dinner at The Hogs Breath CafĂ©. We had lots of laughs and the guys got a fondue that I decided to try via a straw! Tasted like an amazing Hot Chocolate. Here is a pic – I have sooo much class…

Even Jake got a special gift when I got home. Actually two, as I found a stray Thomas the Tank balloon in the back of the Maxi Taxi (as you do…..)

We also had a major accident/incident in our house during the week. Two unnamed occupants of Morley Manor were running around playing chasy andddddddd someone, I like to say Mr Nobody (as he was around a lot when I was little….) somehow managed to make a picture fall off my internal stairs wall!

Which left lots of glass all over the internal carpeted stairs. So Jake had to clean it all up whilst Embee Louise looked on….. First time that Jake has used my new vacuum cleaner, which I have had since Sept last year!!! I found it very entertaining watching him work it all out!

Next weekend Jake is going down to Ikea to purchase me a replacement picture…. Whatta boy!

And how is this for news, one of the guys at work won a BMW from purchasing a ticket with The Guide Dogs. How very exciting for him and he is such a lovely man! I asked him nicely, okkkkk I MADE HIM have a pic so that I could include it in my Morley Report.

Here he is with his lovely new BMW:

So this week as I said it’s been really cold, that cold that the other night I had to wear my very sexy yellow beanie to bed! I even brought it to work and we shared the love of the beanie around!

We found a snake skin at work this week and word on the street is that it was from a deadly brown snake…. Ohhh such fun! Here is the very brave Seamus with his friend “The Snake Skin”

I do love Seamus! It's always lovely to see him at work every day. Here is another pic of the boy I love!

So it’s a Long weekend here this weekend (to celebrate the Queen’s Birthday) and how great is it to have three whole days off with nothing to do. It’s great to just to chill out. Jake is off visiting his Dad and Baby Brother for the weekend and it’s just Embee Louise and me!

You know sometimes in life we take things for granted soooo much. Like being happy, healthy, loved etc. And I know I say this a bit on here, but the support and love that I have from my friends is absolutely priceless and at times I don’t know where I would be in this life without you guys. ☺

People bag Facebook alot. But to me it's been amazing reconnecting with friends from all different times in my life. It's a cheap form of entertainment too and I cannot begin to tell you the enjoyment I get out of reading friends comments on their pages and to me.

In this age of technology I believe Facebook has brought some of us even closer as life gets so busy that sometimes we don't make the time to stay in touch. I find that for myself talking to people via Facebook is just as same as if we were together, sitting on my lounge and having a chat!!

Well kids enjoy your week and see you next Sunday!

Me xxx

05 June, 2011

New Friends, Laughs, Food, Rum and not a Whale to be seen!

Well Groover's here I am back in one piece, slightly swaying back and forth.... but hey that's just a normal weekend for me hehehe.

So as some of you may know I have just returned from a 3 day Food and Wine Cruise with P&O out of Brisbane. We booked this way back in July last year, so it had been a long time a coming. I can remember even talking my Grandad last year the night before he passed away and telling him all about this cruise :)

How I ever got through two days of work, well somehow I did and then the day was here. My good friend Brenton came and stayed the night before and he, Jake and I all went out for dinner which was nice.

Next day was smooth sailing, pardon the pun! We drove, parked, shuttle bussed (which took 3 mins), did all the paperwork and as we were in a Mini Suite I had a card with No. 1 on which meant I could get on first. Brenton was No. 7. Elaine and Heather were running late and the place was getting very busy so I decided to board just me, but I was very lucky that I had 4 lovely Greek sisters adopt me in the queue and when we had our boarding pic taken I was the sister in the middle, the one that the family doesn't talk about hehehe.

Found my cabin really easy and there I was, just me, myself and I. I was so busting with excitement, so took a few pics as you do and then Brenton turned up! And not long after Elaine and Heather.

They have a sailaway party when you leave so we went upstairs to have a drink and settle in. The sun even came out and what a great feeling to finally be there and what a spin out to be on a cruise ship departing from Brisbane and not Sydney.

You see I have been on two cruises in the past. One when I was 20

and the second about 13 years ago. Both times I never even had a window let alone a balcony. This time we had a Mini Suite with Balcony and this is the 2nd best type of cabin on the ship. I have to tell you Groover's if you can, you need to put in the extra $$$ and do this type of cabin or a balcony cabin even.

The first night we slept with the balcony door open, fresh air and what a way to sleep listening to the ocean just outside. Also at times if you just feel like getting away from all the people you can just sit outside on your private balcony and have that space and enjoy the views, sunsets even sunrises etc.

We had a Life Jacket Drill, which was very serious hence my jokes about the two guys on stage being Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston from The Bodyguard! Anddd that later on stage when there were about 12 men on stage with arms folded I thought I was on the wrong cruise and it was actually the Wild Boys Afloat boat haha. Now remember this bit for later ok....

Of course no cruise would be complete without the "Special" Bread Roll Pic!

They are my special friends on cruises and help me with sea sickness! Here is one I prepared 20 years earlier!!!

The cruise of course was Food and Wine themed. And one of the highlights food wise was eating at The Salt Grill restaurant by Lang Mangan. It cost $40 but you could pick anything from the menu, as many dishes as you wanted. We had two tables of six and I had dinner that night with three friends from High School who were on the cruise as well!

We had a lovely couple at the table beside us later in the night who were celebrating their 60th Wedding Anniversary and even had letters from our Prime Minister and The Queen, as you do.

I made some great new friends on the second day when I was looking for a pool lounge at the pool. They even had me drinking a Rum and Coke BEFORE LUNCH! I know I am shocked too....

We had lots of laughs, checked out each others dogs, we even became a team in the Music Trivia game. Nahhh we didn't win the plastic drink bottle! Story of my Life! That night we went to Karaoke where people used the Tiger to tie their scarves too and used this same Tiger to Plank! Yep you read correctly. I even saw a lady in her 40's, in a dress do it!!!! Sorry wasn't quite quick enough to take a pic, was too busy laughing and being in shock!

My friend Marie from my old work was on the cruise too and came to Karaoke! I loved hanging out with her :)

After Karaoke we all moved onto The Dome! I loved it there as it just went off and people of all ages were there just to have a good time and people honestly didn't care how old anyone was. I saw people there from 18 to prob in the 70's having the best time :). Was nice to see in this day and age.

I tried to take the stairs alot and one night as I was making my way up 102 flights of stairs, okkkk it was really 94! I bumped into this couple and the lady said to me, excuse me I think I might know you. We had actually seen each other at the car park place and I thought she looked familiar but wasn't sure. So after a bit of conversation we realise we used to work together. She even had an interview at my new workplace about 6 years ago and nowwwww are you ready: works for Wildboys Afloat! It's a sign hahaha. So who knows I may partake in a little boat cruise down the track, let us hope it's not that little!!!!

I absolutely loved doing my walks on the walking track on the ship! Who would have thought! And how great was the weather.... this I forgot about and so enjoyed the Sun. I miss it.....

It also took me a bit but I finally worked out the secret to the food on the ship was to go Alacarte for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

I'm actually booked on a New Years Eve 11 night cruise later this year on the same ship. Something I booked at the start of the year to give me something to look forward to over Xmas and New Year this year as I had a bit of a sad one last year due to it being the first one without my Grandad. The way I see it, if you can't have a good new years eve on a cruise ship then there is something wrong with you. So this was a great time to see if I was still a lover of cruising, and kids I am!

For me what I love, is laying in the sun with the view of the ocean around me, meeting such wonderful new friends, people that make you believe in, that there are still great people out there to meet and that is never too late to make new friends!

I also love how people are friendly, happy when they are on holidays. You know what I love to do? Nooooo not that!!! hehehe. I love that when people are taking photo's you say to them how about I take one of you guys all together! I did this a few times on the cruise and one morning when I was walking with my iPod I helped out a family of four, a Mum and Dad and two young kids. How lovely to see their smiling faces when they saw the pic afterwards! Made me day and made me smile for the rest of my walk :)

So my friends this is where the story ends, for now...... of course the house is still swaying oh so slightly and yes I may need to put a hand on the wall to steady myself in the bathroom, but I'm fine and I don't want you to worry about me! LOL.

It's back to work tomorrow and as I like to say "Things we do for money" hehehe, but lucky for me my job ain't too bad and the people are great!!!

Be good, take care and if you see someone taking a pic offer to take one for them!

Me xxx
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