Dog Tree


Just on the edge of town there is a sign directing you to Dog Tree Road. And if you know what you’re looking for, you’ll come across a very unusual tree.

You might easily drive past as it blends in so well with the surroundings. This ordinary looking tree, just inside the State Forest, is hung with dead, wild dogs.

These dogs have been hunted, killed and strung up. It’s a gruesome and strange display.

In 2013 the ABC reported that “wild dogs are on the verge of wiping out sheep grazing in many parts of Australia, threatening the future of small communities that rely on wool production for their survival.

For years, the feral dogs have been costing farmers hundreds of millions of dollars annually. It’s become the most critical animal welfare issue facing Australian agriculture.”

I’m still not sure why the dogs carcasses have been left to rot on the tree. Perhaps as some sort of statement about the wild dog problem?

It looks like the opening of a horror movie…




 Friday Poetry: Birthday Poem

liz and milleLast Friday, due to a combination of technical problems, I missed putting up a poem on Friday. Instead, I found myself in a Apple store for the first time in my life. The girl in a blue t shirt told me I had to make an appointment.

“You need to make an appointment to speak to a Genius,” she said. “It’s like going to see the Doctor.”

This week is the birthday of my sister Liz and my cousin Mille. So here is a poem for their birthday; it’s not a friendship poem  or a birthday poem but a poem to help them to a happier day. I owe these girls big time – they always put me in a better mood.


Julie O’Sullivan

Dogs don’t worry.

They sleep,

and yawn

and eat,

and scratch,

and slowly fry on warm verandahs, and


at flies (in moments of great exertion)

and slowly open sleepy eyes

to gaze at men; who worry

and look at dogs

and mutter,

“Dumb animals!”


Friday Poetry: Matilda

zpage027Poor Matilda who was burned to death. Written in 1907, this poem is a warning to children to never tell lies. I must warn you, if you are the type you loves taking offence, you may find this poem offensive to children and people who tell lies. Personally, when I first read it at the age of ten, I thought it very funny.


Hilaire Belloc

Matilda told such Dreadful Lies,

It made one Gasp and Stretch one’s Eyes;

Her Aunt, who, from her Earliest Youth,

Had kept a Strict Regard for Truth,

Attempted to Believe Matilda:

The effort very nearly killed her,

And would have done so, had not She

Discovered this Infirmity.

For once, towards the Close of Day,

Matilda, growing tired of play,

And finding she was left alone,

Went tiptoe to the Telephone

And summoned the Immediate Aid

Of London’s Noble Fire-Brigade.

Within an hour the Gallant Band

Were pouring in on every hand,

From Putney, Hackney Downs, and Bow.

With Courage high and Hearts a-glow,

They galloped, roaring through the Town,

‘Matilda’s House is Burning Down!’

Inspired by British Cheers and Loud

Proceeding from the Frenzied Crowd,

They ran their ladders through a score

Of windows on the Ball Room Floor;

And took Peculiar Pains to Souse

The Pictures up and down the House,

Until Matilda’s Aunt succeeded

In showing them they were not needed;

And even then she had to pay

To get the Men to go away!

It happened that a few Weeks later

Her Aunt was off to the Theatre

To see that Interesting Play

The Second Mrs. Tanqueray.

She had refused to take her Niece

To hear this Entertaining Piece:

A Deprivation Just and Wise

To Punish her for Telling Lies.

That Night a Fire did break out–

You should have heard Matilda Shout!

You should have heard her Scream and Bawl,

And throw the window up and call

To People passing in the Street–

(The rapidly increasing Heat

Encouraging her to obtain

Their confidence) — but all in vain!

For every time she shouted ‘Fire!’

They only answered ‘Little Liar!’

And therefore when her Aunt returned,

Matilda, and the House, were Burned.


My Kitchen Rules

My Kitchen Rules; must admit I like this show. I can’t commit to watching it every night – but I love every bit I see.

It demonstrates the cooking talent of the amateur cook. And it’s quite impressive. I’m captivated by the cooking technique of these “characters”.

It’s amazing to think that all over Australia, every night, men and women are cooking up something marvellous. Flavours and textures are all combined to create beautiful food and all in about 45 minutes after a long days work.

I love meeting people who have a passion for cooking. My Mum’s friend sent me a recipe for lasagna, after I cheekily asked for her secrets. The recipe was unapologetically lengthy and detailed. Another Mother casually told me she was experimenting with baking different types of bread to see which her children preferred! Who has time to bake any more you wonder? Someone who loves baking that’s who.

The other day on a talk show they were discussing whether it is OK to serve take away at a dinner party. Unbelievably some thought this was fine. How does that make sense? Home cooked food is usually cheaper and always tastes better than anything you can buy. The point of a dinner party is to cook, and thus treat, your guests.

This woman on Sunrise also said that if she had more than 6 guests she would call in the caterer. My, my – what a precious approach! Lots of Aussie families have 6 or more people to feed every night. And do these families fork out the big bucks or have to live on some sort of pirate stew? No – they develop the skill to cook for a crowd on a regular basis. After all it’s just a matter of doubling quantities.

At least these cooks are only “judged” by their family – not by two smarty-pants in suits like in My Kitchen Rules.

Back to ‘My Kitchen Rules’  – I’m a big fan of the Bondi guys and the cupcake queens . If you could combine the Bondi healthy, delicious food with the cupcake queens beautiful deserts, it would be perfect.

I didn’t want to make this post about breastfeeding but it did occur to me that in my home, my kitchen does rule. My baby really is being served top quality. It’s food at the perfect temperature, with a taste that has variety; it fulfils her hunger and thirst and comes with a warm cuddle. Perhaps it’s a bridge too far, and I’m not basing this at all on science, but I believe it will set her up for a wonderful foodie life. A life of happy eating, where she will love good food and find the true joy of sharing food with those she loves.