IS Winter Coming?

Where has half the year gone?

It’s June already – Aussie winter started on the first, not that it’s even felt like summer’s over yet. This autumn we’ve had an incredible run of warm still days with absolutely stupendous sunsets; shepherds and shutterbugs alike are delighted.

Probably thanks to all the back burning going on.
Probably thanks to all the back burning going on. Hooray for air pollution!

I’ve been AWOL, neither reading nor writing any blogs, but I’ve been around, doing stuff behind the scenes. Like… changing the look of my blog! Whaddaya reckon? I think it balances words and pictures much better than my old one.

sunset Gold Coast hinterland autumn colours
This one reminds me of the ‘world splitting in half’ paintings from Heroes season 3. Probably because I’ve also been binge watching it on Netflix.

I’ve also taken my first tentative steps into proofreading and editing with my first ever paid writing gig! A milestone… though it wasn’t exactly a roaring success. I might bitch tell you about it later.

sunset over Gold Coast hinterland
Another day over…

I’ve had some adventures… like the time I went for a stroll around the block, decided to go off-trail into the bush and nearly put myself into a survival situation. I’ll tell you about that later too.

sunset Gold Coast hinterland autumn
…and another…

The boys have been doing some cool stuff; Finn got to play in the under 8s footy match during halftime at the Gold Coast Suns’ game at Metricon Stadium! He ran onto the field through a giant banner just like the pros and might’ve even got his noggin on TV. He was super excited and not nervous at all about playing in front of a few thousand people. Well, a few hundred at least, the rest were off getting beer and pies before the third quarter.

...and another...
…and another…

And Rory finally had his big boy’s 5th birthday party! I did tell you about my troubles organising his early January birthday every year (which is why this year we delayed it until after school started) but FOUR MONTHS after the fact is a record even for me.

red sunset behind tree Gold Coast autumn
Blazing through May…

We had a photography competition on at school, so I set the boys loose in the garden with the cameras which they quite enjoyed. Lots of shots of tree trunks and the fence.

Rory in the garden
And grass. And feet.

Finn especially liked using the geewhiz camera, so that evening when I headed up the hill to shoot the sunset he wanted to come with me.

red sunset Gold Coast

I usually do it on my own but it was nice being able to share it with him; it could be our new special thing; until he gets bored of it anyway. I let him take a few shots and he said he ‘likes photography now’.

red sunset Gold Coast silhouette
See Finny? It absolutely IS possible to stand still for 1/30 of a second.

And he was only too happy to take direction…

jump sunset Gold Coast Queensland

I really love this time of year – autumn is the best. The evenings have been warm even after the sun’s gone, like it’s been late summer instead of late autumn. We did have one suddenly wintry Thursday morning a couple of weeks back. When the kids got up they yelled “It’s freezing Mummy!” and bolted for the couch. It was about 13C. Yeah we’re wusses and don’t do well in the cold.

Finny was waiting for any excuse to try on his new jacket.
Finny was waiting for any excuse to try on his new jacket.

They’re 5 and 7 and-a-half now, and they both still like a cuddle on the couch first thing in the morning. It helps when they’re still a bit sleepy. They scrunch into my side, sometimes plonk their legs over mine, and even allow me to kiss them on the head. Occasionally they’ll stumble over to me all bleary-eyed and mumble “I wanna cuddle”. A cuddle is the priority, before even ‘good morning.’ It’s the best thing ever! How much longer will that last? Ages I hope.

pink sky at night pink clouds sunset

Roars passed a huge milestone last week: lost his first tooth! He only told me it was wobbly the day before it fell out, but didn’t lose it and was thrilled to get his first “pocket money for not doing anything”. My baby. I didn’t get something in my eye like I normally do when the boys do something cool and grown up, but I’m suddenly noticing the days flying by much too quickly and the boys growing up a bit too fast for my liking.

It doesn’t help that the days are shorter. The sun now sets even before footy training finishes but the boys insist on playing another 20 minutes in the near dark while their sossies are cooking. The maple trees near the oval have changed to oranges, reds and yellows -they know the season even if the weather doesn’t.

Rory has no hand. He isn't yet able to stay still for 1/30 of a second.
If you’re wondering where Rory’s right hand has gone, it’s because he couldn’t lie still for even 1/30 of a second.

These amazing sunsets and setting aside the time to capture them have helped me appreciate these days more. It’s what photography does for me in general really, freezing a moment or capturing a detail I wouldn’t normally notice. The full brilliance of a sunset lasts a matter of seconds and then it’s gone… but thankfully the boys aren’t changing that fast.

power lines sunset Gold Coast Queensland

What a happy way to end the day! It’s almost a spiritual experience. How many times do the colours change in a sunset? How many opportunities for joy are there in every single day? Countless. At least that’s the dream.

red sunset through grass Gold Coast hinterland
Red sky at night…
grasses and red sunset Gold Coast hinterland
… shutterbug’s delight!

Looked up while taking the bins out on Wednesday and saw something else a bit special…

Ring around the moon means rain soon.
A halo! It’s not very clear because the cirrus clouds were scudding by way too fast.

There’s a saying for that too; Ring around the moon means rain soon.

Also totally accurate, as it turns out. All day yesterday (Saturday) the Gold Coast was smashed with severe storms which arrived late Friday night. Over 120mm (4.7 inches) of rain fell in our area in 24 hours, and further inland they got over 250mm (9.8 inches). Plus we got cyclonic winds of nearly 80kph and a king tide. And today is sunny and warm again, like it never even happened.

…Aside from all the fallen trees, flooding rivers, flooded homes, lakes where sporting ovals and driving ranges used to be, roads underwater, still-closed beaches and scattered power outages that is.

Towards the misty rain-cloaked hills of the Hinterland. Visibility was less than 200m all day.
Towards the misty rain-cloaked hills of the Hinterland. Visibility was less than half a kilometre all day.
The driving range at Tallebudgera. The targets include that blue and red sign which is a picture of a Great White shark, appropriately rearing up from the deep.
The driving range at Tallebudgera. The targets include that blue and red sign which is a picture of a Great White shark, appropriately rearing up from the deep.
“If it’s flooded, forget it.” Our usual road into Mudgeeraba was underwater so we had to go around the long way.
On the plus side the garden got a much-needed soaking and our gully flooded which will no doubt make the froggies happy.
On the plus side the garden got a much-needed soaking and the gully flooded which will no doubt make the froggies happy.

– Michelle

P.S. I think it’s particularly awesome we had so many blazing red sunsets in the weeks before Dad’s birthday. His present to us?

14 Comments Add yours

  1. Robyna says:

    Lovely to see you back. GREAT new look and I think your writing is getting better too – so all around winning, I would say. Can’t wait to hear about the promised stories.


    1. Michelle says:

      Thanks Robyna. Can’t wait to tell them!


  2. Missed you, Boo. The pictures are gorgeous. I like the halo one the bestestess. Stop leaving, K?


    1. Michelle says:

      Thanks Huffy! I like that one too, though the clouds messed it up a bit. And I never left, I was just … er… not here for a protracted length of time. I still haven’t figured out a way to slot bloggy stuff in to my everyday life without something or everything else getting neglected and banking up. D’oh.


  3. Christopher says:

    It’s nice to get a catch-up and also tantalizing bits for potential future stories. And also all these wonderful pictures.
    I also like the halo one best. I thought at first it might be the Aurora Australis.
    It’s also so funny to think of your hemisphere moving into winter while in mine full-blown summer–with hot, humid days–is under way.


    1. Michelle says:

      Thanks Christopher! I wish it was the Southern Lights, but we’re not far enough downunder for that. Have to go to bloody New Zealand! Fortunately my husband is from there and we visit the South Island pretty regularly, but haven’t seen them yet. One day I hope!
      And it’s funny but sometimes when we’re in winter all I want is heat and on stinking hot summer days I wish we’d get a cold snap. The grass is greener on the other side of the planet?

      Liked by 1 person

  4. so did you turn off the AC and turn on the fans? 😀 I heard it’s pretty pleasant all year round (expect the rains, and forest fires, and winds…) I absolutely love the pictures!! your kids sound like they know to push limits and buttons and can’t stay still for nothing! (have you tried bribing? lol)

    Blog looks awesome! happy you “checked-in” 🙂 we understand, life always happens!


    1. Michelle says:

      We turned the fans off a couple of months ago but we just hadn’t used the fireplace yet which was weird. Of course since I published this post and that massive storm blew through the temperature has dropped to more wintry levels. Days are still sunny though – that’s why I love Queensland. 🙂
      And thanks for the feedback on the blog! And yeah – life! I’ll figure it all out one day 🙂


  5. joshi daniel says:

    so gorgeous 🙂


    1. Michelle says:

      Thank you Joshi! I do love my corner of the world… 🙂


  6. Every time I read one of your posts, I have this immediate desire to go out and take pictures! Except, I don’t quite have your ‘eye’ for things (and the only camera I have is on my phone)…I’m in the middle of German thundershowers right now, rather than Australian sunsets. But, whatever the case–your photography is inspiring, to say the least. I am also loving your new theme! It definitely works for your mix of photos and commentary. 🙂 It’s tough to say what my favorite pic was–but the one of your kids all bundled up, and the fact that you said they still ask for cuddles, definitely touched my heart. My baby is only a year old, but I’m already dreading the time that she won’t let me cuddle with her. So, it made me smile to think that I could still have some years left! 🙂 Welcome back to the whole blogging ‘scene’ and there’s nothing wrong with a little break here and there. I’ve been insanely busy this week and don’t know if I’ll get anything out (which goes against the once a week deadline I set for myself.) And, we’re headed to the States in 1.5 weeks and I know it will be tougher to find time to write during the six weeks that we’re there. I think we can just do what we can do, and nothing more. As long as we’re enjoying it along the way, that’s the important thing! 🙂


  7. Michelle says:

    Thanks Schnitty! As always, you give awesome comment. 🙂 I love that you enjoy the photos, I’ve really gotten more into photography over the past few years – probably because I finally know how to use my camera! And photos have become such a big part of my blog that I’m glad I found this new theme – I’d felt they were kind of wasted before.
    As to the cuddles, I think you’ll be safe with Laken for a few years yet! I hope they’ll never stop wanting a hug from me because it’ll never be weird as far as I’m concerned. I think I’ll help my own case if I can break my habit of patting their backs/bums like I used to do to help settle them when they were babies. But they’ll always be my babies! 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.