Sean and Louise Burford

Married on the third day of December in our backyard, Canberra, Australia.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Belconnen is dying.


I have fond memories of Canberra's kangaroos. I took this photo of Kangaroos at the Belconnen naval base on my way to work one morning in 2005. Seeing kangaroos grazing in the middle of the suburbs was a unique part of the Canberra experience.

I'm saddened that in May 2008 500 kangaroos on the Belconnen naval base in Canberra were herded into an enclosure and killed. You can still see the circular killing area just south of the buildings.

The government's rationale is that grazing and kangaroos threatened the grasslands, which are home to three endangered species.

Photographs of the kill.

If the comments on riotACT are any indicator the public in Canberra views kangaroos as pests. The first page of Google search results for "canberra kangaroo" or "canberra kangaroos" is mostly articles and pages about the cull.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

May Day

To celebrate May Day somebody bought tulips and left one on each persons desk last Thursday.

According to the Wikipedia article, it would have been appropriate for Sean to chase down and kiss whoever left the flower there, but since it had been there for a while no kiss was exchanged.

It was a bit droopy, but Sean gave it to Louise who put it into water. That was just what it needed. It is almost a week later and it's still strong.

New Arrival

Louise and I would like to announce the arrival of Bindi Jayne Burford. She was born at 38 weeks at 12:38am on the 3rd of May (National Scrapbooking Day). She weighed 7 pounds 2 ounces and is 19 inches tall.

Both Bindi and Louise did really well throughout the birth and recovery. Thanks to the support of Overlake's hospital staff and our doula Debra, the birth was as close to our birth plan as we could have hoped. Labor started just in time and lasted for 6 hours. We had a natural delivery with no pain medication. Sean helped Louise and Bindi during the birth.

We're back home now after spending two days recovering in the hospital. Ebony is helping us remember to wake up every few hours to feed Bindi.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Shadowbrook


Dina, my dear friend, has her birthday the day before mine. So my other very good friend, Tonya, decided to shout Dina and myself brunch at Shadowbrook!! Ahhhh, it's such a beautiful place to have brekkie. We were very lucky enough to have a table that we could view the river as it flowed past. (You had to be there really early to grab a river view table). All in all, we lingered there for as long as possible as the food was wonderful, company fantastic all surrounded by a beautiful environment! What more could one ask for?


When we got there, we had the option of walking through the lush rain forest like path or take the trolley down! Of course, we took the trolley!



Sean and Me.....


Abhi, Dina, Sean and Me standing beside the Soquel Creek.


Me, Tonya, Abhi and Dina standing above a waterfall.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Louise's Birthday Party

Yep, I turned the big 3-0 on August 10th. And I feel wonderful!!!! :)


To celebrate, I decided to hold a birthday party, something that I haven't done in a long time. It was held at The Nova Studio and we made tub tea and my favourite, Thai Milk Bath.


It was just an all girl thing as I didn't think boys would want to make tub tea, smell herbs and chat about women stuff. So Sean, became the photographer and managed to sit through all of the girl conversations. Luckily, we didn't start chatting about babies as there were 2 up the duff girls there ready to pop very soon, Alice and Sarah.


At the end of the evening, everyone received a little goodie bag for helping me celebrate and for driving up to The Nova Studio.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Pacific Science Center - Butterflies

The real reason we went to the Science Center was to see the butterfly house.





Riding the Pendulum Bike

At the Pacific Science Center they have a bike that you can ride around a thin track about 4 metres above a pool.

Noisy video:
video

There is a safety net, but if you bail on the far side of the ring they will probably have trouble retrieving the bike since it is self powered. I guess they have a stick or something.

Even though you can't fall off the track (the weights below you keep you in place) it is suprisingly scary. I had to do it three times before we got the video right! See if you can spot where I wave.

Pacific Science Center

After riding the Ducks (a tour we went on), we decided to check out the Pacific Science Center. Once in line, they told us that if we waited another 15 mins. we could get in for $5 instead of the usual fee of $15. Why? Well, they were closing in an hour and we weren't able to see everything. So we caught some snaps of interesting things and then headed straight for the butterflies!!!!
Outside of the science center there are a few small statues. Here are are school of 4 fish with grumpy faces.
The science center has a large water area. There are water cannons, human powered water wheels and an elevated bike that you can ride around a track.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Seattle

After leaving Santa Monica I visited Seattle, Washington. Louise joined me for the last few days and we had a look around.

Seattle is a beautiful place. There is an abundance of trees and greenery. The city isn't packed with traffic or pedestrians. With the exception of the archaic method of payment they use at a lot of public parking, it is a great city to visit.

One of our first tourist stops was the Seattle Underground Tour. Between this and the Ride the Ducks tour we learnt a lot about the city.

On the Underground Tour, which actually does go under the sidewalk, we learnt about how the city is built on mud flats. After it burnt down in 1889 they decided to raise the ground level. This was to address the problems of living at sea level, such as tides causing sewers to flow back out through toilets and giant sink holes forming in the roads. The unusual thing about this is that the street level was raised after the city was rebuilt, so you actually enter on the second or third floor of most buildings. Also, because the side walk is owned by building owners the city council did not have it raised.

Eventually sidewalks were built between the streets and buildings. The Seattle Underground Tour shows you the original sidewalks that are like tunnels under the new sidewalks. It covers a lot of the early history of the city, such as the introduction of the Crapper.

Walking around town we saw a lot of unusual art. We saw a statue of Lenin that was rescued from Russia, a parade of pigs and a giant bridge troll.

A tour guide filled us in. One percent of the cost of non residential buildings in Seattle has to be used to buy art for public places. This "One Percent for Art" concept apparently started in Seattle in 1983 and has spread to 300 other cities. As a result, Seattle has both a lot of art and a lot of character.

We sought out the giant yeti and giant squid in Pike Place Market. While we were looking at a map, a passer by stopped and offered directions. That has never happened to us before!

There was a boat race on Lake Washington the weekend after we left. While we were there we missed an annual parade. Seattle also has the first drive through ATM that we have seen.

Washington borders Canada. You can actually hire a seaplane and fly up to Victoria in British Columbia.

We'll definately be visiting Washington again. Next time we will have to visit Mount Rainier.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Peach Picking


Sean missed out on this activity too! :( I went peach picking with Dina to a little place called Brentwood. We had soooo much fun and walked away with a bucket of yellow peaches and a bucket of white peaches. All up, we spent $36 on peaches. Not bad. But they tasted heavenly!! Mind you, I gave most of mine away as I can't eat all of them by myself! But the best part of the day after posing in the peach orchard, was finding this little cafe and discovering that they have the "best" apricot pie I have ever tasted!!!!!!! It melted in my mouth and I just had to take home an apricot pie for Sean to enjoy too. So, it sat in the freezer until he came home. Which thankfully, I didn't have to wait too long. :)


Lavender Picking

While Sean was away in Santa Monica, I was invited by Karen to come lavender picking at her friend's place in San Jose. This is the view from the lavender fields.




Me, bending over and picking the lavender. It's best to pick lavender in the early mornings as the sun dries the oil out if picked later. We weren't super early, like 6am but managed to pick the lavender at a much more reasonable hour, like 9am!!! :)
This is Karen, who's very happy with her efforts! :)


Our stash!!!! I'm planning to use my lavender in a hydrosol - just need to buy the equipment first...... (a double-boiler basically). :)