notes from here and there


New address: 32 Grays St., Hamilton, QLD 4007

We found a house. It has issues but the good ones outweigh the bad so we're happy. There is plenty of room for visitors, a fairy garden and a nice kitchen. I can't wait to move in and finally feel settled. Of course the real move-in won't happen until we're back from the holidays but I'm okay with that. Just glad to know I can stop searching for a house and I can start thinking about other things. Hurray! 

 Front gate to courtyard entry. 

 Driveway to parking below and entrance to bottom level. 

 Front courtyard and front door. 

View from the road.

Once we move in I'll post more pics. Lots of space to explore and a great view of the river from the top of the drive. We are near Race Course Rd. which has lots of shops and eateries and Bretts Warf where you can catch a ferry to town or walk over to Portside for movies and more shops and eateries. Plus, we are still close to the airport, New Farm and town. I feel so lucky. See what happens when you finally let go and let the universe take over and think positive...all at the same time.


Remembering friends

Last year we spent Thanksgiving with the Martinez's in Big Bend. Kim just sent me some pics of Sophia and Mia from that trip and I wanted to share them here. We really miss our friends back home.

Always be prepared.

You never know what you might need. 

 Love on the land.

Best Friends.

Don't you know it.

We will be back in Texas on December 1st. Looking forward to it!


Who is John Johnston?

Maybe she means Jack Johnson...???


Miss Haidee

 Sophia wearing a Miss Haidee at Finders Keepers in Brizzy.

Last Sunday we went to the Finders Keepers Market in Brisbane. It's a craft/handmade market by artists around Australia. We know Sophia likes clothes. That's no secret. But even so, it's rare she tells me she really wants something without some kind of prompting. On this day, we were wandering around the market. Sophia was with Carl and she came and got me and said she found something she just had to have and she dragged me over to Miss Haidee's stall. Well, of course we had to get it.

Put your orders in for Christmas!

Eat your heart out Jack Perlutsky

John Johnston from susan simmons on Vimeo.
Sophia at the Finders Keepers Market in Brisbane

Need I say more?


Play School Australia

I love this show as does Sophia.

One thing I love about Australia is ABC1 -- their version of PBS. Great children's television with no commercials and always a fantastic documentary about something I'm interested in. Never fails. I love that certain things are free here like programs you'd find on Noggin and sports (for those who love sports). There is a big campaign at the moment to keep all sports free for the "good of Australia." That's not something we say much in America...let's do this because it's good for everybody. I feel that more here...more of a sense of government responsibility as well as civic. Doesn't mean I don't love American optimism and independence any less. Just something I've noticed. Still think America is a great place to live and I miss it (and you) very much. 


Halloween Down Under

Australians are missing the point when it comes to Halloween. I think it's some sort of Hollywood version that got imported and distorted here. They think it's all witches and warlocks. it's too bad because they miss out on the whole alter ego thing and the great creativity that can play a part in Halloween. Nevertheless, when I was here 20+ year ago, there was no such thing as Halloween so in some regards we are lucky.

Sophia, the bad witch and Alex, the pirate at the Bulimba Halloween Festival.

Sophia got to go trick-or-treating on Oxford Street with her friend, Alex. They had fun. As you will see, Angelina Ballerina was soon transformed into the good witch (we had to buy a witches hat when we got there because everyone was a witch or a ghoul...even the babies)! Then, later she became a bad witch (when the face got painted green.) You can't beat free lollies and face painting. So it's all good.