Browsing Archive: June, 2011

Goodbye June! (30 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Thursday, June 30, 2011,

Scraping in a final blog post just before midnight - this one takes me to a total of 30 posts in 30 days. Not quite blogging every day, but I'm glad I've been able to catch up and do 30 posts.

It's been a bit of a mixed bag. I haven't always had the time or energy for insightful, engaging blog posts - but I hope the readers of this blog enjoyed at least some of my offerings during the month of June :)

For my final post, I don't have much to say except to tell you that I've just been to see X-Me...
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Potato gnocchi (30 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Thursday, June 30, 2011, In : Food & Recipes 

Tim has been exercising his culinary muscles in the kitchen lately. I was very lucky earlier this week that he decided to whip up some potato gnocchi from scratch - it was utterly delicious :)

Homemade potato gnocchi collage

I made this collage using Picasa.

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Madness (30 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Thursday, June 30, 2011,

♪ ♫ Madness, madness, they call it madness ♫ ♪

Madness were a little before my time. I first came across them through their appearances on the Young Ones, but didn't know their music well at the time it was released.

It was during my Uni days that I really discovered Madness and their music. I bought several CDs, including a fantastic imported singles collection from the now (sadly) defunct Gaslight Records store on Bourke St, Melbourne.

I totally fell in love. The music with its ska and...
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Back on the boat (29 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Wednesday, June 29, 2011, In : Travel 

We flew down to Melbourne at Easter to buy a new (second-hand) car to drive back to Darwin. On the way, we collected our boat from the friend who was kindly looking after it for us. After doing a bit of maintenance work on the boat after it being in storage, we recently took it out on its maiden voyage in Darwin :) We set out on a lovely Sunday afternoon from the Dinah Beach boat ramp in Stuart Park. The weather was just beautiful, and the water was calm. It was so great to get the boat on t...
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Cinderella (29 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Wednesday, June 29, 2011,

It's something of a tradition that I post a favourite piece of nonsense verse at some point during a daily blogging challenge. I've previously blogged Jabberwocky (Lewis Carroll) and On the Ning Nang Nong (Spike Milligan). I've even posted some of my own adolescent poetry :)

So here's another favourite:

Cinderella by Roald Dahl

I guess you think you know this story.
You don't. The real one's much more gory.
The phoney one, the one you know,
Was cooked up years and years ago,
And made to sound all so...
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Easy Beetroot Risotto (28 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Tuesday, June 28, 2011, In : Food & Recipes 

I originally posted this in the Recipe Box page on my website, but I'm now turning it into a blog post too for those who only access my site via their RSS readers :)

This is a recipe I came up with myself for a simple and colourful beetroot risotto. I first made it in Melbourne, where we had prolific rosemary bushes to call on. A dollop of yoghurt or sour cream on top would go very nicely too.

Easy Beetroot Risotto

Easy Beetroot Risotto
Serves 6

  • 1-2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups arbo...

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Hibiscus (28 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Tuesday, June 28, 2011,

A beautiful hibiscus flowering in our garden.


One of these days I'm going to set up my tripod early in the morning and do some time lapse photography of a hibiscus opening up to greet the sun. It's one of my favourite sights from the kitchen window each morning :)

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India at Mindil (25 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Saturday, June 25, 2011, In : Travel 

This evening we went along to India at Mindil - a cultural festival featuring food, music and dancing that was held at Mindil Beach.

To be honest, I was underwhelmed. We bought palak paneer from one of the food stalls, and found it to be distinctly less than hot - so much so that we worried about the food safety aspect. It was a bit of a measly serve too. We made up for it with a yummy fruit shake, but in that case were let down by poor customer service.

The crowds were huge, with lots of jostl...
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FIGJAM (23 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Thursday, June 23, 2011, In : Professional 

Do you ever forget how good you are at your job?

I do. But today I had a nice little reminder.

A researcher needed help to locate a health questionnaire that had been published in a journal. She'd made some headway, but was stumped when it came to finding the full-text. I took her through a few steps about finding out which database holds a particular journal in full-text, how to navigate through a journal's archive to find an article, using the reference list in an article to locate source doc...
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Aspic Delight! (22 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Wednesday, June 22, 2011, In : Food & Recipes 

A colleague of mine recently took part in a retro dinner party, where all of the food had to be popular dishes from the 50s and 60s. We had a marvellous conversation on this topic, dredging up all kinds of memories of foods of the era that we'd seen in films or on television, but especially from our own recipe collections. It was this conversation that inspired us to make blancmange this week :)

During our discussion, I reminisced about a set of old Weight Watchers recipe cards that my Mum onc...
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Finding Solutions: Assistive Technology Forum (21 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Tuesday, June 21, 2011, In : Professional 

Today I attended a forum called "Finding Solutions: Assistive Technology in Education, Training & Employment for People with Disability or Learning Difficulties", organised by the National Disability Coordination Office Program and held at Charles Darwin University.

Accessibility is an area that I've long held an interest in and felt strongly about, so I was really glad to have the opportunity to attend this forum and learn more about what is being done in education, and what *can* be done - e...
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Blancmange (20 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Monday, June 20, 2011, In : Food & Recipes 

Tonight we found ourselves with a litre or so of milk that was about to hit its due date. While pondering what to do with it, I remembered a recipe that I'd been wanting to try for ages - blancmange!

A couple of years ago, I bought some of Mrs Beeton's recipe books - reissues, or rather modernisations, of recipes from her famous book of household management that had been converted to current measurements. One of them focused on puddings and desserts, and had a section on old-fashioned rice and...
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Vintage craft book: "Celebrity Needlepoint" (18 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Saturday, June 18, 2011, In : Creativity 

Ever since our last #blogeverydayofjune adventure I've been meaning to post another instalment of vintage craft :)

Last time I blogged about one of my favourite vintage craft books, "Crafts for Fun and Profit". That book is part of my own craft book collection, but originally belonged to my Mum. Today's book is one that my Mum has hung on to - I took these photos when I visited at Christmas.

The book is called "Celebrity Needlepoint" (1972) by Joan Scobey and Lee Parr McGrath. It doesn't have a...
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Tired (17 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Friday, June 17, 2011,

I have no energy for writing a blog post today.

Roxy snoozing on my pillow

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Playing with Dumpr (16 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Thursday, June 16, 2011, In : Technology 

I love discovering fun online tools, especially when they're free :)

Dumpr is a photo and image editing tool that I came across at the beginning of the year. It has some really nice effects available. A few of the effects that used to be free are now part of their paid "pro" package, but there are still enough free ones to make it worthwhile checking out.

I especially like the Amazing Circles effect. It doesn't work well with every image, you'll have to try a few to find out for yourself which ...
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The Library Minute (16 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Thursday, June 16, 2011, In : Professional 

I really like the Library Minute videos produced by Arizona State University Libraries, featuring librarian Anali Perry. They have a wonderfully light touch, are visually interesting and professional looking, and manage to impart plenty of information (but not too much!) in the space of a single minute.

Have you seen them? If not, do be sure to check out their YouTube channel. Here's one of my favourites:

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QR codes in the library - an investigative and fun orientation program (14 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Tuesday, June 14, 2011, In : Professional 

I consider myself fortunate to work in a small but energetic team of liaison librarians at Charles Darwin University (CDU), and I love that new ideas for providing innovative and relevant services to our clients are encouraged here. This year we created a fun activity that incorporated library orientation, mobile technologies, learning about our on-campus and online students, promotion, and activity-based learning.

Last year, when the call for abstracts for the Third International m-libraries ...
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Sunday night at Nightcliff Jetty (13 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Monday, June 13, 2011, In : Travel 

I promised that I'd do another blog post featuring Darwin sunsets, so here it is :) Last Sunday, we decided to get some hot chips and help ourselves to a sunset view at Nightcliff jetty. It turns out we weren't the only ones who had the same idea - it was absolutely packed! But there was enough coastline and enough sunset for everyone, so we eventually found somewhere to park the car and pulled out the picnic blanket to enjoy the view. I'll let the photos do the rest of the talking (larger ...
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Kumihimo revisited (13 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Monday, June 13, 2011, In : Creativity 

Last year I blogged about trying kumihimo (Japanese braiding) for the first time.

Since then, I've bought supplies and set to work making a number of braids using this technique. I find it very enjoyable and relaxing, and easy to do while travelling or watching TV. I've learnt about colour combinations and patterns, and my technique is definitely improving.

Daily Image 2011 - 12 June

Daily Image 2011 - 13 June

Kumihimo collection

I'm planning to use these braids to create bracelets. I've bought the jewellery findings, but turning the braids into "wearable art" is a w...
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Glenti (11 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Saturday, June 11, 2011, In : Travel 

Today we went along to the Greek Glenti festival, held each year in the parklands alongside the Esplanade in Darwin. It was a much bigger event than I had imagined. There were lots of very busy food stalls selling souvlaki, yiros, octopus, oysters, spanakopita, moussaka, honey puffs, baklava, and a whole lot of other sweets that I don't know the names of. Music was playing in the central stage area, and kids in traditional costumes were dancing. And somewhat to my surprise, there were carniva...
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String! (10 June)

Posted by Sally SetsForth on Friday, June 10, 2011,

The internet is made of cats.

Therefore, whenever I upload a video of my cat I am strengthening the foundations of the internet - yes? Just performing a community service really :)

String. It gets Roxy pretty excited sometimes.

If the video is too small, you can expand it to full screen or view it on my YouTube channel HERE.

If you want more kitty goodness, I've added all of my videos of Roxy (I mean, contributions to the foundations of the internet) to this YouTube playlist.

P.S. I put tonight's ...
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2011 ALIA NT Recognition Award (9 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Thursday, June 9, 2011, In : Professional 

On May 26, the ALIA Top End group held its annual Library & Information Week dinner, which was combined with the presentation of the 2011 ALIA NT Recognition Award. A great night was had by all :)

This was the second year that the ALIA NT Recognition Award was, well, awarded. A'Mhara Russell from the NT Department of Health Library was named as the winner, for her innovative use and promotion of Web 2.0 technologies in the library.

I was really impressed by the achievements of all of the nomine...
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Tears For Fears in the library (8 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Wednesday, June 8, 2011,

There will be actual library-related posts appearing during this month, but they're all in draft form and awaiting further attention. In the meantime, please enjoy this offering.

With thanks to my colleague Julie for sending this my way :)

Dustin McLean's literal video version of Tears For Fears' "Head Over Heels". Strange goings-on in the library ...

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Diana Wynne Jones (8 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Wednesday, June 8, 2011,

The wonderful and oh-so-talented author Diana Wynne Jones passed away earlier this year on 26 March 2011. She'll be sorely missed. Her works will live on in the hearts and on the bookshelves of her readers. I am one of those readers, and this post is my small way of thanking her for enriching my reading life.

I'm actually not a big fan of either fantasy fiction or young adult fiction. But the most notable exceptions to the rule are, strangely, where the two genres intersect. Some of my favouri...
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Fannie Bay, milkshakes and fish & chips (7 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Tuesday, June 7, 2011, In : Travel 

I didn't really intend for this month's blog posts to be of the "what I did today" variety. Mostly because a mixture of the wet season, assignments, work and tiredness over the last few months have meant that I don't usually do very much that's worth reporting on. But now that the semester is over, assignments are finished, work is settling down and the weather is so much better, I'm finding that I'm getting out and about a bit more. And since the original intent of this blog was to keep my f...
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Saturday night at Cullen Bay (5 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Sunday, June 5, 2011, In : Travel 

You can't spend all of your time studying - sometimes you need to get out and remind yourself that there's life away from the computer. On Saturday I pined for the beautiful day outside while I was stuck in the study, but when evening approached it was time to take a break and get some fresh air. Tim and I decided to get some dinner at Cullen Bay, but first we stopped off at the boat ramp near the Darwin Ski Club in Fannie Bay. Checking out boat ramps is a regular activity for us, especially...
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Study blues (5 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Sunday, June 5, 2011,

I just submitted my final assignment for the semester. Huge feeling of relief. It was almost a week late, due to an awful combination of illness and fatigue. But I finally got it done.

Illness aside, I wish I knew a way to study that didn't involve massive disruption to everything else in my life. Last minute/day/week assignment panic. All those days and nights where I think I will finish the thing, then discover (or simply decide) that there's lots more still to do - those darn perfectionist ...

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Okonomiyaki (3 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Friday, June 3, 2011, In : Food & Recipes 

I have an assignment to finish, so I'm copping out a bit tonight by posting a recipe. But hopefully you will love it so much that you'll forgive me ;)

Okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake) is a regular dish at our place. It's so simple and delicious. And it's popular too :) It was the first recipe I ever added to my Recipe Box page, and in fact was the reason that I originally created the page, as it was easier than emailing the recipe to everyone that asked for it!

Okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake)

Okonomiyaki (Japanese Pancake)
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Hello dry season! (2 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Thursday, June 2, 2011, In : Travel 

This is the blog post where I gloat about the beautiful weather in Darwin :)

While you've all been enjoying spring, summer and autumn, here in Darwin we had the build-up (also known as the suicide season because the weather is *that* bad) and the wet season (along with a record-breaking 3 metres of rain!).

But now that you're all turning the heaters on for winter, it's Darwin's turn to shine. The dry season.

About a month ago, the weather in Darwin turned and the dry season arrived. The transiti...
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Blogging again (1 June)

Posted by Sally Cummings on Wednesday, June 1, 2011,

Glutton for punishment that I am, I have decided to participate once again in the challenge to blog every day of June.

My blog's been pretty quiet this year due to a multitude of reasons. But I have been jotting down my thoughts and activities every now and then, and my drafts folder has been growing and growing. So although I certainly won't have an excess of spare time on my hands in June, I figured this was a good push to get some of those drafts out there - and then you all might have a bi...
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Sally Cummings

Artist. Designer. Crafter. Librarian. Foodie. Geek.
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