Saturday, February 25, 2017


Today I met a young lady named Sladjana who is physically disabled with Transverse Mialitis.  She is 19 and virtually paralysed from the neck down.  She was visiting a lady who was her long time carer and accompanied by a young community support worker. 
Sladjana is know as Budgie to her carers.   Her wheelchair is amazing. She can control it with a chin control and when using her laptop she has a remote control mouse giving her all the actions of hands and mouse. There are other aids on the wheel chair such as breathing assist etc etc. 
I am unsure what actually I was invited along for, but I believe I may have interested her in writing a blog about her condition and her day-to-day struggles and wins.  I directed her to my blog and will wait to see if she likes the idea and wants help setting one up.  

Click pictures to enlarge

'Budgie' with computer mouse control

With community support from Clover

Budgie is intelligent, computer literate and artistic.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Regular medical checkup

Over the last week I have had some regular medical tests done....bloods and heart ECG. 

The blood test had a couple of pointers....cholesterol up; iron up and slightly elevated blood pressure even though I take a drug for hypertension.  
The ECG let my GP know that there is problem with irregular heart beats.  He decided to send me for a 2D/Doppler Echocardiogram.  I had that yesterday. The procedure took around 40 minutes and around 40 images were collected.  I will return to my GP on Friday morning to hear what is next.

I don’t receive any age pension, so I missed out on a state pensioner discount of the fee, however Medicare here is good and I paid $480.00 for the procedure and medicare will give me back $196.10.   

PS: My heart seems to be OK for an old fart.  The irregular heart beat will be looked at with a 24 hour portable ECG monitor.

Sunday, February 5, 2017


Bunnings Hardware is a very successful Australian hardware chain.  I hope they continue being successful as I have  a moderately large WesFarmers/Bunnings share package.

There is a Bunnings store near me and I buy there regularly.   One thing I have noticed over the years is the senseless pilfering.  It is especially noticeable in the gardening machinery aisles.  I am unsure if the thieving of mower and other petrol engine parts is done by repairmen or if there are people who just like to be bastards.  Click images to enlarge.

In this aisle I counted 18 bits stolen
fuel caps are popular

Carburetor parts taken
This one also lost its chain

Monday, January 30, 2017

Firing up the pizza oven

Helen and James have fired up their just completed pizza oven. After 24 hours  since firing it up, it is still very warm to the touch. Great result!

Monday, January 23, 2017

Pizza oven

My son-in-law James and daughter Helen, are soon to try out their pizza oven.  James bought a builder’s kit and the oven is nearing completion. As soon as the dome is bricked in the surface is to be plastered with a heat resistant plaster and then the sand mound removed from beneath the bricks.  Small plastic spacers hold the fire bricks at the correct angle to follow the curve of the dome whilst cementing them in.

Looking good!

Click image to enlarge

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

A good idea

Daughter Helen bought a pasta maker and yesterday gave it its initial tryout.   It was from K Mart for the princely sum of $15.  The box did not include instructions and Helen had to google for instructions to get started.   I went to her house to see how it worked.


click images to enlarge

It makes several different types of pasta and works quite well. Certainly easier than mixing pasta dough by hand.   I am astounded that a complex, well made little machine which does work well, costs so little.   Helen reports that it made a very nice spaghetti and she is trying other pasta types today.

Must get one to put in the cupboard with other gear, like coffee makers, electric frypans, deep fryers, juicers etc etc.
On second thoughts it has to be the most speccie Xmas/birthday present @ $15.

PS:  Went to Kmart(s) and found none.  We were advised it was a clearance sale and that line has been discontinued. Bummer!

PPS: A friend of daughter Helen has just found several pasta machines at another K Mart store and is buying me one.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Back into homebrewing

I am bottling a homebrew of beer today.   It has been some years since I last brewed and I did like the flavours I could produce in my own recipes.  There is a bit of mucking around, but I feel it is worth it in the end.   28 X 750ml bottles will sit around maturing for maybe three or four weeks before I can sample the brew. It is not being done to save money, however Australian beer prices are rather high.

click to enlarge