More Sun and Sand and a little bit of surf, anybody…?

Further to my last post, here are some more pics from our last family holiday! No kids this time – just the sand, a little bit of surf and some other stuff!

When the crowds disappear, the expanse of beach seems endless.

Surfers Paradise, Queensland, Australia 2012.

And one for my girls, who are massive One Direction fans….;-)

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Sun, Sand & Family Fun

It’s so cold in Sydney at the moment… Winter has really hit with a vengeance! So I’m hoping that these pics let you picture warm sea breezes, sun and summer to take the edge off the cold – even though they are black and white!!

So just a few pics tonight of my three girls on our family trip to the Gold Coast, Queensland enjoying some quality ‘sister time’ at the beach.

Caitlin wanted to run with her big sisters, but was a little reserved with all that water!

So much sand, and sooo much fun!

Well hello old friend!

I have let the Blog slide by over the last six months or so in favour of Facebook as a way of sharing my photography, both professional and personal. But tonight I have made a momentous decision…  well not really momentous, but significant none-the-less – the reinvention of my Blog! Ah ha, I can hear the trumpets….!

I will continue to use my Facebook business page to display my professional work and the plan is to share my more personal imagery and musings on the Blog, linked from Facebook of course! 😉

Wish me luck and any encouragement you can give me along the way won’t go unnoticed!!

Most of us at some stage, take a wander through a cemetery. As children, my sister and I used to walk through our local cemetery on occasion, mainly looking at how old people were when they met their maker.

I like to look at old graves. Not sure why, I have always had a healthy fascination with these locations. So when my family and I took a trip down to Picton a few weekends ago, of course we had to visit the local cemetery.

Picton cemetery is meant to be one of the most haunted locations in Sydney. Well, I’m thankful to say we didn’t get to meet Casper, but slightly disappointed to say I did not capture any apparitions through my lens either!

It is a very small cemetery crowded with old graves dating back to the mid 1800’s. Many babies, toddlers and young adults are buried there and most of the graves are quite elaborate. As my daughters and I meandered amongst the graves, I took a few snaps….

Celebration time and thank goodness that is over!!

I’ve questioned whether or not to blog this post, but after some encouragement from friends and family and a complete stranger, here goes….

Our ‘Boo-Boo’, our little girl, Caitlin, was diagnosed with an enlarged right kidney whilst still in utero at her 18 week ultrasound. A follow-up ultrasound at 34 weeks, confirmed the same problem.

Two weeks after she was born, she had to undergo a very invasive procedure called a ‘renal MAG3 scan’. A renal MAG3 scan is a nuclear medicine test that allows doctors to see the child’s kidneys and learn more about how they are functioning.

This involved being canulated to a fluid drip and then being injected with a small amount of radioactive dye, and strapped – and I mean strapped! – down to a machine and have her insides photographed to determine why the fluid retention. This takes about two hours all up.

It was determined that her right ureter (the tube that connects the kidney to the bladder) had a ‘kink’ in it, so the kidney could not drain properly. It was operating at about 30%, so stress was being put on the left kidney as it was compensating for the right. This is a relatively common problem in children apparently, and it is not life threatening, so we are very thankful in the scheme of things.

In all, she had three MAG3 scans to decide whether we needed to proceed with surgery. I will say, little ones are very aware of what goes on and their experiences. Caitlin whimpers whenever we walked into a doctor’s surgery! 😦

So, after nearly two years (Caitlin will be two in February), her surgery, a Right Pyloplasty, was booked in for Monday 5th September, 2011 at Westmead Children’s Hospital. She had to fast, not even water, from the night before, so that was going to be a drama in itself! Have you ever told an 18 month old they cannot have a drink??!

I felt a little funny packing the camera and deciding on what lens would be best to use, as I packed for a two day stay, but I thought this is something that should be documented, something that should be remembered as we have come through the other side relatively unscathed and for the better, even if for our own memories! What made me decide to share was one nurse in recovery who stared at me taking a few snaps. I must have looked uncomfortable because she said to me, I wish more parents would do that. I then thought, what the hell!!! We really are blessed to have a healthy little girl who has overcome a little hurdle in life, and that should be shared and celebrated.

I carried her in to the prep room to help administer the gas to relax her. Whilst the anaesthetist and nurse sang Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, and I blubbered, after a short struggle, she closed her little eyes and was asleep.

Nearly three hours later we were called to recovery to find her hysterical! Catheterised and still canulated, she was struggling to get away from all the faces she had not seen before. I picked her up and one of the nurses got her a bottle of juice. As soon as she got it, it was gone. She was very thirsty! Seeing that was worse than having her put under an anaesthetic!

I will say that her surgeon, Dr Danielle Delaney, was magnificent! A lovely lady, a great bedside manner and a true professional. And the nursing staff we dealt with at Westmead were fantastic!

Our thanks to you all for looking after our little Boo-Boo so well and thank goodness that is over! 😉

To go where the animals roam free…

… but alas – for the time being at least – I am chained to Sydney!

Africa, as a start, has always been a dream destination for me, more-so for the chance of seeing some of these and many other animals in the wild. We recently took our children to Sydney’s Taronga Zoo. I have been going to this place for near on 30 years now and some of the exhibits are still the same. Some, but not many, of the animals are still the same too!

My favourites are the lion and the chimps. See if you notice a curious little fellow (or lady, I don’t know!) poking its head out to see what was going on…!

You can click on the thumbnails for a larger view of the images. I hope the colours are not too dark for you as for some reason, I seem to be getting some different colour representations on images in my blog compared to my editing software! Grrrr….

Water drop photography

I love playing with water drops! Most of the different colours are achieved by reflecting my flash off coloured paper which tints the water (as such). Some colours have been highlighted in post-processing, but all have been achieved with:
a bowl; a flash; white/coloured paper; a zip-lock bag filled with water; a pin; a tripod, a camera; a fast lens; and alot of patience!
Click on the thumbnails to see a larger image size.