Our fantasy...

Wandering around Blackwattle Bay we noticed this rather beautiful yacht moored there... we wondered about mooring overnight in the bay and if you need permits to stay. You see every so often we have this fantasy about buying a McGregor Yacht and floating around on it for awhile, but so far we haven't jumped in and bought one. Every time the decision gets closer either our cousin lets us know the latest cost of keeping his yacht or we read somewhere else about the expenses involved, and our decision gets put back for another day.

On the yacht subject and combining two of my loves, boats and dogs... I've had a delightful read lately with Lucky Goes to Sea by Frank Robson.

I'm not sure about sailing with a dog (I think I'd worry too much) but this book is certainly a great read, along with a few warnings again about how much sailing involves.

Some years ago we were on a rather large liner that went through a cyclone, that boat looked very tiny compared to the waves that were all around us. The stabilisers on the boat went and I've never wanted to be that far offshore again, let alone in a little boat. If you watch this video you'll discover where you'll never find me - out in a gale!

However, if you have a yacht you'd like us to mind for a while... do get in touch!

Beautiful Blue Eyes

I've been hoping to capture a picture of Muggles gorgeous blue eyes while we are here... they are so beautiful. They remind me of giant sapphires. Muggles had a long sleepy day under the tree yesterday in her bed, and today she's been much more active wandering around and having a big chat to us.

Muggles had a long cozy cuddle this morning in bed with us this morning, until she was ready and adamant that we get up and give her breaky... so we wandered out only to find she still had some sitting there.

Maybe we just don't speak fluent Tonkinese. But we are getting lots of lovely snuggles, cuddles and chats with her.

Wandering around Glebe

Wandering around Glebe there are so many beautiful homes with the most wonderful tiled staircases, quirky fittings and lovely places to stop for coffee or dinner. Glebe has a great leash free dog exercise area on Blackwattle Bay.

The Anzac Bridge rules over the Bay and as we wandered around the bay on the busy walkway, we ran across many artists drawing and painting. The area where we walked around Blackwattle Bay once was the site of a busy timber industrial area as well as a rubbish dump and soap works. Today it has been transformed into a family/pet friendly park like environment.

This view of Blackwattle Bay through The Blackwattle Bay Cafe window.

History of Blackwattle Bay can be found at Andrew Bassett fine framing

View of The Anzac Bridge and The Boathouse at Blackwattle Bay -
"The Boathouse has an international reputation for serving the finest Australian seafood and Sydney's best array of oysters, always freshly shucked to order". We hope to visit The Boathouse the next time we are in Glebe.

Minding Muggles at Glebe

We're minding Muggles for the weekend and she is so gorgeous. Muggles is very chatty and loves cuddles and likes a play. She is Tonkinese. We had lots of lovely cuddles last night and a few little head butts. She slept on the end of the bed for a lot of the night after a long bed time cuddle.

Message from Muggles:

Hi family, I'm taking good care of the sitters, making sure that they feel loved. I sent them off to Timbah for snacks - they loved it so much they stayed for dinner they said. When they got home, I gave them a lot of cuddles so that they didn't feel lonely.

They seemed to want to play so I kept them busy for a while. After that I was ready for a sit on the lounge, a good pedicure and a watch of how The Block was faring.

Boy this sitter minding is tiring so we all went to bed early. I thought they might like an early morning snack so after keeping them company in bed I gave them a nose rub to see if they were awake and we all got up for a cuppa.

They enjoyed their cuppaa and said that seeing howz it was 3am we could probably all go back to bed again, (gee they are late risers these two!) But seeing howzz they are my guests I went along with them. Miss you...

Maarrrrrow for now.

Our new dog... is red

A while ago when we were house sitting in Paradise Point area in Queensland, we saw a large white dog like one of these in the picture, outside the local vet. We thought it was adorable, and then recently saw another one in orange. So we went on a hunt to track them down and to adopt one of our own... we decided on a red dog for now... we may end up with a pack of these yet. Can't wait till it arrives. Think we'll call it Bluey.

Well I couldn't find the originals in Australia, and so I bought a replica from Mocka and here it is... it arrived today in the post quick as a wink. Great service and prompt arrival.

But... here comes the but... it's not quite the quality we were hoping for, the joints are all visible... but then again, we have to admit - it is a knock off - so we can't be too fussy. I think though that the next one will be an original Eero Aarnio.

Furry hugs from Jasper and Pepper

Loved our furry hugs from Jasper and Pepper today...

We sew thinking about you...

Dog art by Dean Russo

We just adore this dog art by Dean Russo... have you seen it before? If not it is available at www.deanrussoart.bigcartel.com or see Dean's page on facebook

Fond memories of Xena...

Xena weighed in at only 2.7 kilos, yet she took up such a vast space in our hearts and in our house. I've just been looking through our collection of her photos, and came across a few sweet ones of her.

Goodbye to our dear friend Xena

Our little dog Xena has been battling with some health issues for a few weeks now, and this morning when we took her to the vets, he said it would be kinder to her to let her go.

So we said our last goodbye to our dearest little dog today. It's a very sad return to our house from the vets this morning, without our much loved little Xena.

Rest in peace dearest little doggie friend, thank you for all the love.

Thank you to Dr Steve and the vet nurses at Animal Doctors in Port Macquarie

"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." (Will Rogers)

Life at Ingleside

Well our housesit at Ingleside is drawing to a close. It has been a beautiful housesit, and it's lovely to be back on an acreage again. Bird of Paradise plants peek out from the garden with their gorgeous blooms.

Ducks wander in the garden of a morning picking at the grass. After breakfast we wander down with the dogs to the beach and after their swims, we saunter around to a coffee shop together or come back to sit on the deck overlooking the garden.

The rhythms of everyday life here are very easy to get used to. I'll be sad to leave.

Peaches loves to help bring in the newspaper... I love her funny smile and how she brings us her old bones, or her old teddy when we arrive home.

Everyday life is so beautiful here, the garden is a delight to wander in are there are so many beautiful flowers.

When we take the dogs for their walks on our housesits, we are able to visit parts of our local area, that we have never seen before.

We were born on and lived most of our lives on the Northern Beaches of Sydney, and we have been surprised at just how much we have never seen until now. We've discovered so much by being tourists in what was once our hometowns.

I wonder what discoveries we are to make on our next sit? The journey continues.

Flying Fox Cafe

It's nearly the end of our Ingleside housesit, and I don't know where the days have gone. By the time we get up, get the dogs breaky - toast and peanut butter - make the beds do the usual at home - go to dog beach, sit and have coffee watch the beautiful view, and the dogs playing - the day's almost over. The photo here with the bird of paradise flowers, is taken from Flying Fox Cafe.

Toby Peaches and Xena at Flying Fox Cafe

What a great spot Flying Fox Cafe is, not only because the Danes coffee is so good, but it's also dog friendly and if you have kids, on the other side of the cafe is a fabulous kids playground.

Love this picture of Toby near the Danes coffee sign. He's a bit reticent to get going of a morning, but once he is out and about, he loves his trips to the dog beach and to the coffee shop. Isn't Toby photogenic?

Wandering through the Flying Fox cafe today, someone was having a kids birthday party. Now I don't mind a piece of cake even when I'm not fancying a piece of cake - but today I was hungry after our walk - so imagine me spotting a rainbow cake in about 10 tiers cut in half laying there by itself on a kids party table... oh my goodness it looked yummy, it was all I could do to restrain myself from trying to get an invite to the party as I walked past. I'm still fancying a piece - can you tell?

I've searched high and low for an image of rainbow cake that looks as good as I saw today... the one below is from BBC Good Food... go there to find the recipe... oh and if you end up making it, invite me? I'm always good for a cupppa and a bit of cake ♥

Water management skills

We've had a lot of rain here over the last couple of weeks, Kevin hopped up the ladder to see how the rainwater tanks were holding out and discovered the water is still nearly at the top. We're used to tanks from when we lived on a small hobby farm, but it is been so long, we didn't know how our water management skills were holding out, but looks like we are doing fine. I don't know if you can see the water in this boat in the image here, but it would have been interesting to see it at high tide.

Me and my shadow

Love this photo of Toby's shadow I noticed in our collection today

Dog Park

Come with us on a stroll around Rowland Reserve Dog Park...

Always time for lots of pats on the walks
I don't know who enjoys them more the dogs or us

Peaches and a doggie friend walking

Rowland Reserve is such a great place for a dog park...
the animals have a great time wandering around and playing.

The views are so beautiful it is hard to drag
ourselves away at the end of the dog walks.

Toby stopping for a rest at Rowland Reserve dog park - so love this photo of Toby
Imagine patting a beautiful soft fluffy rug - that's what Toby feels like. He is such a loving dog, when he's ready for a pat you'll feel this gentle thump on your leg he leans his head against you.

Tennis Anyone?

Peaches on the tennis court being ball girl

We've been having a couple of hits on the tennis court while we have been here (couldn't call it a game the way I play) and Peaches is our ball girl. She's very good at helping pick up the tennis ball. She is so lovely - when we arrive home from the supermarket she brings us her toy or one of her old bones to welcome us.

Toby and Peaches at Easter Island

We wandered down to dog beach today, and had a little wander around dog park, and then we went for a bit of an amble along a path and ended up at Easter Island! Who'da thought!

We must have walked past this statue at least 5 times on our walks since we've been here.

What fun to see sculpture on the water's edge. Now I wonder, who put it here and why a Moai?

Toby and Peaches at Easter Island statue

Church Point Ferry - tour around on Pittwater

Not far from where we take the dogs for their walks, is Church Point Ferry Service where you can take a ferry for a visit to Scotland Island and have a lovely trip around Pittwater. It takes about 45 minutes depending on who wants to get on and off the ferry. As well as Scotland Island, you'll be able to hop off at Lovett Bay and Elvina Bay, or just sit on the ferry and have a round trip like we did today.

A youtube video of the trip we found via the ferry webpage.

Catch the ferry

Dinner at Waterfront Cafe

Scotland Island at dusk with the mist rolling in.

Scotland Island looked very mysterious and alluring last night as we wandered down to the Waterfront Cafe for dinner. It was a perfect time of night to go to visit, the last of the daylight was casting highlights on the yachts and the mist was just starting to roll in.

The food was fabulous, and there were lovely cozy rugs to keep out the cold. Just about the time my hands were starting to get a little chilly, the heaters were turned on to our delight. Our dinner arrived and we grazed happily watching people hoping in their boats on their way home to the little island. The food is beautiful, we had a mezze plate with a variety of dips, with scrumptious pizza like bread and oysters to start - the oysters tasted like they had just been taken out of the water they were so fresh. Dinner was so filling, we could have shared one between us. The service is excellent, and if you like water views, the view across Pittwater to Scotland Island is wonderful.

View from our table last night

And we love that outside there is a doggie water bowl under the sign for our four legged friends...

Geraniums at Waterfront Cafe

Aromatherapy for Dogs

Toby walking on Rowland Reserve Dog Beach - Peaches in background

Nearly everyday we've been down to dog beach at Bayview for the dogs daily walks and swims, and yesterday we met a couple of friendly fellow dog owners. During our conversation they mentioned how helpful natural therapies had been for their dogs. They noticed one area on our dog Xena's side where she has these occasional skin problems, and they shared how a certain essential oil had been an effective solution to skin problems for their dog.

During my remedial massage career, I had worked with a lot of essential oils, so I was very interested to hear about their success with the oil that they had used. If you would like to know about these types of alternate solutions, check with animal naturopaths or aromatherapists in your area.