Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Living in the Post Office

Has it's moments.....we live our the back of our Post Office which at one stage was used as a dance studio and still retains it's floor to ceiling mirrors at one end.

The floor is uneven but we do have a great walk in robe that is the envy of many of my friends!

We have tried to make it more and more like home and we even installed a wood fired heater before winter which we even had lit last night!

I've been able to get a few interesting peices from a local shop called Trading In Design as well as finding a few things at clearing sales to put a little bit of Annie in the "dance studio".

I've popped a few photos on here today for you to see what we've been up to and its a pity I can't take a photo of the eneven floor.....

Feature wall of prints and photos

My collection of fat little birds

My little black board

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.......

Well yesterday afternoon I searched through box after box to find our christmas decorations and climbed higher then where I should be allowed too go to grab the christmas tree and then proceeded to decorate.

I love my tree, it would be around 6ft tall and I cover her in 500 clear fairy lights and sliver & green baubles - I think she is the prettiest tree that ever lived and love putting her on show each December.

It's hard when you are still living out of moving boxes and trying to find all of your pretty christmas things to put around our post office residence, but it is also a good excuse to go to the shops and pick up a few things to help in the meantime!

I bought some lovely white decorations for Cottle House a few weeks ago and I look forward to getting them to make a rustic branch tree for our post office which is really spartan with christmas although we have popped a few christmas lights in the windows.

I can't wait until I have my own home to make really christmassy.....lets hope its sooner rather than later and I can get all my pretty things out for all to enjoy!

Monday, November 29, 2010


Today I was out to find some inspiring blogs and came across my dream house!!

The roof would need to be black and a few more windows, BUT Letitia from http://www.thewhiteshed.blogspot.com/ has just made my afternoon.

A truly beautiful home that she should be very proud of - its just wonderful!!

I hope she does not mind but I have popped this photo here for you all to see and get some idea of what I want the homestead to look like.

She is lovely!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Where to Build?

The town in which I live is surrounded on four sides with four unique landscapes and when wondering where to build MY WHITE HOMESTEAD I really am quite perplexed as where she should go.

I love the high country and am drawn closer to the Avonside area each time I drive past but during the winter ski season I can see potential problems getting onto the highway and back into town - no matter what time of day.

Whilst a drawback, the country here is amazing and at the moment very green with lush paddocks for sheep and cattle to graze.

I also am in love with the vista's and boulders that are along the road to the beautiful village of Dalgety - the land is high enough to see snow fall and provides a blank canvas for me to start imagining my little peace of heaven.

The land here is drier than that of Avonside and water could be a problem - but I can also see my home and garden being a green oasis for family and friends to enjoy!

The dream seems more alive in this direction than any other.

I can see myself scouring the land for For Sale signs and berating local real estate agents to find me somewhere I can call home for quite a time to come!

The Snowy Mountains are beautiful and I am so happy that it will place host to my planning, building and living in MY WHITE HOMESTEAD!!

Dalgety countryside

Friday, November 26, 2010

Werribee Park Mansion - what a grand home!

My husband & I lived in inner city Melbourne for quite a few years before we bought land and built our first home in Point Cook.

After being in the area for quite some time, a girl friend and I went out driving one day and happen to come across the Werribee Park Manison and the Sofitel Werribee Park Hotel.

From the moment I walked into this grand garden and it's massive and I mean massive residence, you are transported to a time of opulance and style, the gardens are truly inspiring, green grass everywhere, an ornamental lake and paths and nooks and crannies that draw you in.

Werribee Park Mansion was built by pastoralists Andrew Chirnside and Thomas Chirnside between 1874 and 1877 in the Italianate style.

Its residential and working buildings supported a large farm workforce. The rooms open to the public include the billardroom, the main bedrooms, the reception rooms and part of the kitchen.

When Thomas Chirnside committed suicide, some of the property was passed on to George Chirnside, thus building the Manor in the 1890s. From 1923 to 1973, the Mansion was a Catholic seminary, Corpus Christi College.

When trying to find a venue for our wedding, I took my husband back to where my girlfriend and I had discovered and he like me knew instantly what a beautiful place Werribee Park would be for our wedding.

I've popped just a few photos on here for you too see the granduer of the estate and is still is today the largest private residence to be built in Victoria.

Paterre Garden @ the Mansion

Werribee Park Mansion, Werribee Victoria

Stunning gum

Just one garden where we were married

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Silver Birch - such a beautiful tree

I love no other tree like I love the Silver Birch!

One of the first things that I will do when we get around to buying some land (a good few years away yet) is to do mass plantings of Silver Birch.

Silver Birch are without doubt my favourite tree with its stunning slender trunk and stunning vibrant green leaves make such a beautiful contrast.

In my dream garden I would love to have a long driveway dotted with silver birch that would lead guests to the white homestead.

They are a truly stylish tree and they look splendid in any garden.

We had two planted in our suburban garden at our home in Melbourne and they just looked so tall and elegant.

Last weekend I attended a wedding at Gold Creek Chapel in Canberra and the gardens that are attached to the chapel were planted out with massive silver birch and they just made the garden all the more attractive.

I think all gardens big or small should plant a Silver Birch!
Mass planting of stunning Silver Birch

They started as tiny twigs & quickly grew to

Another tree that I find stunning is the Poplar.

Often underrated, it also gives off two brillant colour shows throughout the year and even when they are bare in winter they are still stunning trees.

The town where I live is surrounded by Poplars and the highway through town is dotted with them.

From vibrant green at this time of year to the golden colours of autumn, the Poplar is a gorgeous tall tree!

Cruden Farm

What an amazing garden - last year my husband took me to an open garden held at Cruden Farm  - for those of you who are unfamiliar with Cruden Farm, it is owned by Dame Elizabeth Murdoch.

Cruden Farm is possibly the most famous garden in Australia and the lifetime achievement of national treasure Dame Elisabeth Murdoch.

Dame Elisabeth, who came to Cruden Farm as a young bride 80 years ago, designed and planted the renowned herbaceous borders, picking garden, shrub walks and tree-shaded lawns at the heart of her sublime garden, skilfully blended with the surrounding countryside. In December the garden is filled with glorious roses and perennials, and one of Australia's most famous avenues all contribute to a place of rare beauty.

My favourite part of Cruden Farm is the lemon scented gums that line the driveway that were planted by Edna Walling - they are just stunning trees and the aroma is just delicious!

Again in December the garden will be open again to the public and I can not implore you enough to pack a picnic and drive to Langwarrin outside of Melbourne and enjoy the splendour that is Cruden Farm.

 The start of the lemon scented gums leading down from the home of Dame Elizabeth

 The Walled Garden that was planted by Edna Walling

The lawn tennis court - where's my racquet?

Gardens to die for

Recently I visited Sally Ann and John Cottles beautiful home "Shirley" near Nimmitabel.

What a stunning garden they have  - I could have moved straight in! From the lake to the tranquil parterre garden. I took a few photos on my iphone and I hope they inspire masses of plantings in your garden.

Whilst we all can't have a massive lake to swim in, there is nothing like water in a garden to set a tranquil mood - even a small fish pond or water feature can really add a relaxing feel to any garden, be it a city courtyard or town back yard.

I believe the garden is being renovated by garden designer Paul Bangay and it is truly a magical spot to visit if you ever have the chance.

Having seen how green and lush the garden was has kept the dream alive for me that in these harsh winter conditions that our gardens endure each year, things do come back to life come spring!

Old Australian Homesteads

My dream is simple - to be able to capture the style and grandeur of the homesteads that were built in the mid 1800's to early 1900's.

Brindabella Station via Canberra, Australian Capital Territory

This home was owned by Thomas & Annie Franklin - it would be wonderful to see what the homestead looks like now.

Yathalla Park homestead, Yathella, New South Wales, ca. 1910

How grand would it be to be able to live in this magnificent home, beautiful wrought iron detail on the verandah that would have stretched around the home. I hope that it still stands.