After I published Julie’s previous letter Diane from Always Crave Cute left a comment suggesting that Julie needs a blog of her own I agreed with Diane and asked Julie about it. This is what she said; You asked if I have ever done a blog, and truthfully, I haven’t as yet! But I adore the written word and have even written articles for magazines over the years. Many folk have asked if I am a writer by profession, and it always makes me smile. What a huge compliment!!
Now for the next instalment - over to you Julie;
So ... is the weather still gorgeous over in UK? We have been in the throes of a rather chilly snap which has affected the southern half of Oz as well as most of the Eastern coast. We are far enough North that it has not affected us up here! Thank heavens as the cold and I am not fond bedfellows at all. So many youngsters have been seeing and touching snow for the very first time in their lives this weekend. Amazing! Brrrr....
Cobweb in Julie's garden.
It's beautiful Julie but did I ever tell you about my fear of spiders? I can only imagine the fearful eight-legged nightmare that built this.
I am smiling as I think of your family members in Adelaide. My step mum, Adele, is from the Adelaide Hills and snow is so very rare in that area. The news reports were filled with children who were having such a fabulous time as they made their snowballs and even Snow Men. The huge smiles on their mesmerised faces was a real delight to see, after all the awful and sad stories which the news has been filled with for what seems like ages. Of course, though rather chilly here in the tropical area of North Queensland, it is gorgeously sunny, so the early-morning temperatures climb very rapidly to the mid 20s, and it is just wonderful at this time of year and quite heavenly really! I know what you mean about the warmth you are having, which means that a raincoat is quite a nuisance. And to think that our idiot Prime Minister (who no one admits to liking) keeps on about there being no such thing as Climate Change!! (Julie wrote this when Tony Abbott was in power. Malcolm Turnbull, a former investment banker and lawyer, is the new prime minister.)
Our seasons have changed so radically in just the past three or four years, that even the fruit crops such as Mangoes, don't know whether it is winter or summer. A good thing about the lovely, if weird weather though, is the amazing strawberries which are available at the moment so cheaply in Queensland. I can easily live on them! I love all sorts of fruit and with everything growing to perfection here, I feel so lucky. We have got passion fruits on the vine at the moment, but my banana tree decided to curl up its toes recently!! I chop up my strawberries and then scoop the passion fruit pulp all over them, with just a small amount of sticky brown sugar. Too Yummy! And I love stewing the winter apples with a few strawberries tossed in too.
Another visitor to Julie’s garden
The weather the whole world over is just mad ... I think you and I had almost identical temperature ranges the other day, from what I saw on the World News! Your poor dahlias seem to be suffering the mixed up signals from Mother Nature, just as all the plants here are doing with the summery climate we are having during our winter. The mango tree which is in my neighbours yard, but overhangs into my yard is FULL of fruit and blossoms all at the same time! We do not usually see even the start of its flowers till late September for December fruit. It is totally bizarre! The Fruit Bats are not even aware of their favourite fruit being there so these mangoes are actually seeming to grow without being destroyed, unlike when they are on the trees at the normal time of year.
My girls are all out lazing in the sun right now. Bless their hearts.... They felt the chill earlier on, that's for sure! It was MUCH cooler than yesterday. We had just 6.5 degrees at 6.30 this morning. However, it had climbed to 14.3 by 8 o'clock, and now at 9.30am it is already 18. We should get to the mid 20's by lunchtime and stay there, till late afternoon hopefully. Mmmmm...Beautiful! My big chairs have lovely fleecy throws on them so it is little wonder that the Fur Babies love curling up on them early in the morning and late at night. Well dear Barbara, I shall head off and have a nice hot cup of tea. I think that going out on the veranda with the dogs and enjoying the warmth sounds like a good plan.
Much love and many smiles too, Jules xoxoxoxo
PS The wrinkly teddy bear is LouLou, my almost totally deaf Shar Pei. The big dog with the floppy ears is Georgie, who was so badly abused that my vet had to keep her over for four months to get her well enough for me to adopt. The small dog with the pointy ears is Koo, who has adopted us by coming over from next door after she decided that she loved the company and being allowed to sleep on my bed with the other two every night when she stayed for a weekend when Kylie and her sons were away. The boys still come to play with her all the time and it works out perfectly for us all.
All photographs courtesy of Julie Drew
A follow-up from Julie
I too had a shocking fear of spiders as a small child, and was cured of it by my darling dad! One evening there was a huge huntsman spider up in the corner of my bedroom and I was beside myself with fear, screaming for Dad to kill it! He flatly refused, instead catching it and putting it in a lovely big jar. He made me catch insects for it and basically have it as a sort of pet, telling me that it would be far more afraid of me who was so much like a giant to it, than I had a right to be frightened of IT!! I did release my new friend into the garden after a few days, by the way!! My dad is such a clever man to have thought of such a thing!
Well, it worked, and ever since I have had a healthy (if respectful where venomous ones are concerned) fascination for these amazing critters. I even did a long assignment when at high school, all about their web-spinning abilities!! I love to see the very delicate little webs in my garden as the sunlight catches them. They truly are beautiful and so amazingly complex.
Thanks so much Julie, I'm sure readers of this blog will enjoy hearing from you again, just as I do.
Love Barbara xx
This talk of spiders reminded me to wish you all a Very Happy Halloween.