5 things…

September already? I’ll wrap August up on Thursday, but for now, the 5 things that made me smile last week…


Unfortunately, I think we’ve photographed the last of them for the year. The sun was up at 6am this morning and will be getting earlier and earlier from here on. Given that we don’t have daylight savings here in Queensland by the time December rolls on in the sun will be up by 4.45am.


Hubby and I had a couple of cheeky sundowner vinos at the Surf Club the other afternoon and grabbed this gorgeous colour.

This meme

Get it?

Magpie memes

Okay, the first day of Spring was yesterday but the swooping birds signs have been up in the usual hotspots for the last month. I’m one of those fortunate people who have never been swooped by a magpie or a butcher bird or, indeed, a plover or lapwing but I know that for plenty of people this time of year means either helmut-ing up for the daily cycle or run or staying indoors.

I love magpies and butcher birds but that doesn’t mean that I can’t giggle at these memes – and that’s not to take away from the damage that these guys can do. For those who get swooped and who have been injured it’s serious stuff. Apologies to those who don’t like maggies as much as I do.

Magpie apps

Still on the subject of magpies, I found a website yesterday where you can actually log magpie attacks. Sort of like Dorsal – the shark spotting site – but for maggies. 

As an aside, I remember reading some research once that pretty much proved that magpies “remember” and “recognise” people they’ve swooped before, so they’re clever little birds.

Also, it’s usually the father that does the swooping to protect the nest, so really, when you think about it, he’s just being a good dad; which leads me neatly to… 

Father’s Day

Here in Australia Father’s Day was yesterday. We celebrated by taking a picnic to one of our favourite spots in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, Mary Cairncross Reserve just out of Maleny.

The views up here are fabulous – as was our picnic lunch.

I’m fortunate in that I have a good role model in my father, and our daughter is fortunate that she has the same in hers. Here’s to great dads – those with us and those who have passed.


Peanut Butter Chocolate Crackle slice. It’s made with dates, coconut oil, honey and peanut butter and, according to Sarah, is good. Who’d have thought it? Recipe on the way.

Saturday Kitchen


This weekend was an all request weekend. Sarah asked for chocolate bread and butter pudding, Grant wanted roast beef with yorkies, and my choice was tomato and basil soup with the most amazing roasted garlic and basil garlic bread; which leads me to…

Recipe of the week

This store cupboard tomato and basil soup is super easy, super yummy, and as long as you don’t indulge in the garlic bread, also healthy.

Soften some finely diced shallot in olive oil and then add 2 tins of (good) tomatoes and a good handful of chopped basil. Bring it to the boil and let it simmer for a couple of minutes before letting loose with one of those wand blitzer things. Season and serve. If you want you can add a dollop of crème fraiche, but it’s not really necessary.


With Escape To Curlew Cottage off being edited I’ve started the rewrite of Careful What You Wish For – something I last looked at in September last year.


I’m trying to streamline this a tad, but it’s still a work in progress. I’m seriously considering stepping away from my Astro blog completely and focusing my energies on the blogs that support my writing ie this one, my author site and BKD – Brookford Kitchen Diaries. 

In case you missed it, this week I posted:

Okay, that was my week…how was yours?

Author: Jo

Author, baker, sunrise chaser

19 thoughts

  1. Stunning photos, Joanne! Since it is fleeting, I wonder whether we appreciate it more? Yes, I totally “get it”. Teens in the 1970’s and I still appreciate in 2019. We have crow attacks in our part of the planet. I always think about my Father on Father’s Day, his birthday, the day he passed away, every day. Yummy photos, again! I enjoy seeing your emails in my inbox, Joanne:)

  2. Beautiful sunrise and sunset photos, Jo, and your food photos are OMG yummy! We have red-winged blackbirds that are palm-sized but they’re aggressive in the spring. I’ve seen them attacking people. I can’t imagine what damage a magpie can do because it looks so much bigger than our blackbird. I’m glad this blog is one of the three that you consider to focus on. #lifethisweek

  3. The roasted basil and garlic bread looks amazing. I’m having leftover potato soup and have a slide of GF bread to have with it so might toast it and put some garlic and butter on it.

    Your picnic looked lovely yesterday and yes… I did get the Fleetwood Mac mention. Very timely as they’ve just been here haven’t they?

  4. Oh I’m going to miss your sunrise pics! I had no idea the swooping magpies were such a thing. Maybe we have dodged the magpie bullet in Sydney! Those memes really made me laugh and your Yorkies had me salivating. They’re the best! Hope all goes well with the edit! How exciting!

    1. One of my besties lives out in the Hills where we used to be & gets swooped every year. When you look at the map most of the attacks are happening out of the city – you guys are pretty safe where you are lol. We used to have heaps in Castle Hill too & I was never bothered by them. And yes, I do believe my yorkies are the absolute business. Have a great week.

  5. Jo you’ve been rocking the cooking and sunrises as per usual. Thanks for the magpie reminder – they’re lovely birds but they scare the pants off me with their beady eyes and sharp beaks. I watched a friend get swooped several times when I was in my late teens and I’ve never recovered from it – so they are not my friends and I avoid any swoopy areas like the plague!

  6. Oh, I would LOVE a piece of Peanut Butter Chocolate Crackle right now!
    Wishing you a very happy Spring. According to some calendars, today was our first official day of Autumn….but I’m still in complete denial about that! 🙂

    1. We’re heading to the UK for Christmas this year so I’ll be enjoying our Spring temps for as long as possible.

  7. The magpie memes and info made me smile. As much as I love spring and summer, I do get frightened by the magpies as well. Your peanut butter, chocolate crackle slice looks amazing!

    SSG xxx

  8. You’ve been taking some stunning photo’s lately Jo! Shame the sun has to go and rise too early for us *sigh*! You totally made me laugh out loud with those maggie memes! 🤣 …. and that soup …. and that roasted garlic and basil garlic bread has me soooo hungry! I am reading this as my dinner is still cooking in the oven! Hope you have a wonderful week! xo

  9. Yikes, magpies are beautiful birds but I hate swooping season! I made Yorkshire puddings the other day too – they’re so yummy. And that soup with the garlic bread looks amazing!

  10. Still very wary of the magpies since seeing my young bro attacked in a park in Taree on the way north for a holiday with our parents. So I am respectful and as “they” owned this new area where we live now, I let them do their thing and I have not gone on my around the neighbourhood walk for a few weeks. It will all settle soon. My husband lived in Wardell (near Ballina) for his primary and high school years with his large family as his Dad was principal of the school there!

    Thank you for linking up for Life This Week. Next week the optional prompt is Taking Stock, I hope you can join in again. Denyse.

Comments are closed.