Monday, 22 October 2018


If the video won’t open, press on the link below it. 

Photographs are copyright Runningonempty. 

Today the Australian Parliament apologised to the survivors of Institutionalised Child Sexual Abuse. 

Unfortunately some victims were not able to attend because they have died. In the following tableau in our garden, we remember them here. 

The little blue flowers are forget me nots. 

Copyright Runningonempty.

Copyright Runningonempty.

Sunday, 21 October 2018


If the video won’t open try the link below, but do come back here! All photos except the first one are copyright Runningonempty.

Say g’day to Enypniastes eximia , the “headless chicken monster” discovered by scientists 3 km below the sea surface. 

Australian Antarctic Department. 

Now this is one of our chickens this evening. She’s a Light Sussex.

Copyright Runningonempty.

Are you seeing the resemblance? I’m not really. It certainly is amazing though. There’s a link at the end of this post where you can look at the short video and make up your own mind. 

It was a warm Spring Sunday evening here, so we ate outside:

Copyright Runningonempty.

The grey lace tablecover is a long length of dressmaking material (though one could make curtains from it) just doubled. 

The vintage lady figurine playing the harpsichord (she’s a wind up music box and plays Für Elise,) was purchased years ago to add to my “dolls that play musical instruments” collection. I started it when I was a music teacher. She was made in Japan.

Copyright Runningonempty.

The jug and large bowl set were purchased second hand and are reproduction pink and cream transferware. They can be used as a decorative basin and ewer set on a dresser in a period style bedroom, or as a jug and salad bowl at the table. 

Copyright Runningonempty.

Our Spring garden goes mad with flowers in October and November. In the jug, looking from top to bottom, are tall blue dianella flower buds just starting to come out, creamy yellow ixia spikes, lavender, creamy yellow roses, wisteria, and tiny blue forget-me -nots that self seed wherever they please in lovely drifts. The bluebells shown in my Oktoberfest post are now finished. 

After this meal we gave the flowers to a neighbour. 

Copyright Runningonempty.

The reproduction blue and white transferware bowls are by Robert Gordon.

Copyright Runningonempty.

The fleurs de lys glass tankards were the only things on the table purchased new, (except for the forks), at the start of our marriage years ago. Everything else pictured is second hand. All the bowls and the jug came from a monthly market here. 

Copyright Runningonempty.

Copyright Runningonempty.

Anyway, I’m proud that so much on this table was sourced second hand and taken home wrapped in newspaper and reused supermarket bags. We even reused the garden waste and poultry poop to make compost for the flowers. That’s less greenhouse gases from mining and manufacturing , and less plastic packaging to end up in the ocean to poison our purple “headless chicken” friend, isn’t it?

Remember, a vote for a conservative party is not a vote for the environment.

Please leave a comment below.

Thursday, 11 October 2018

“Shields are made of metal, not paper.”

If any video doesn’t open, click on the link below it.

The opinions in this post are my opinions, (I’m not an expert on money matters) and some experts’ opinions. Some of the latter may be selling a product, but their advice may still be good. In all financial matters you should always do your own research, and make your own decisions. 

Persons suffering from diagnosed anxiety or depression should make sure they are taking their prescribed dose of medication before reading this post. 

Brother can you spare a dime:

While I was compiling this post this week, the world’s stock markets drastically fell. I have been predicting a recession for some time. To me, empty surplus new apartments in the city, a housing price bubble, some companies failing or contracting, record personal, housing and business debt; relaxation of banking and finance companies’ regulations, countries like China and Italy struggling; combined , remind me of the late 1980s before the crash, and before the recession of 1990.

“Shields are made of metal, not paper” - Lynette Zang. Meaning: holding 5-20% of metals (silver and gold ) in your portfolio in these times is wise. Cash, too. 

I don’t endorse all of this man’s opinions on some of his videos, but he imagines the next Great Depression for us here:

“The emphasis on interest rates and deregulation at least reminds us that what we are dealing with is essentially a financial event. The recession of 1990-91 was dominated by financial failure. In most cases, it was the fall in asset prices that meant that loans could not be repaid, thus transferring the distress to financial institutions.”

— Ian Macfarlane, former Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia, speaking in 2006.

Most people seem to be spending up and borrowing as though the next crash and recession isn’t just around the corner. It is, and we are due for more than just a correction. Many things are overpriced. Bull runs and high property prices don’t last, folks!

I believe people need to save, save , save money in case they lose their jobs, put investments somewhere safe (like gold or silver, or even cash) diversify investments, and similar defensive tactics. 

Do I think that Trump could turn a recession into a great depression? Well, he is a past bankrupt, so I can’t feel that he is an expert in these matters. What could cause that, also , is that governments around the world have SO MUCH DEBT. In the last recession they made huge stimulus payments. How are they going to afford to do that now? Depending on the size of their economies they owe billions, or trillions. 

The other thing I am certain will happen, is that economies will come out of the next recession/depression, with most of the workforce made up of robots and A1. As the economies tank, human workers will be sacked as is normal in those times. They just won’t be reinstated, as the economy improves, in most cases. In Australia, “hiring” a robot costs only $16 au. That’s lower than the minimum wage, and they don’t require superannuation, workers compensation (Work Cover) insurance, sick leave, holiday pay, parental leave pay, etc.

If you don’t have a large vegetable garden, plant one. Plant fruit trees. Get chickens or a goat. Learn self defence. None of these things can hurt your life, and you just might need them. 

Background research

How best to prepare for a recession

——————————————— (I would add, build vegetable gardens if you have a yard). One person’s opinion:


There is a shock coming': why markets should brace for trouble:

Article about USA:

[FAQ] CRASH PLANNING: 401k, Annuities, ETF's, IRA, Stocks & Bonds

They Called the Last Financial Crisis. Here’s What They See Causing the Next One

Articles about UK:


Articles about Australia:

Our weakest link: Australian suburbs most at risk

I have no association with any company mentioned here , do not endorse any, and receive no payment from them. Articles and videos were sourced from Google searches and my news feed. My opinions are just that, however, I have lived through two recessions as an adult. It wasn’t easy. 

Monday, 8 October 2018


Melania Trump Wears Pith Helmet

Recently, on tour in Africa, Melania Trump revealed herself to be a secret fish slapper. Bemused Africans politely nodded, as she described what to do, what fish to use - “Bass be best”, and how not to be the one that falls into the water.

Very important to read the comments after watching this clip. 

Mr Palin on the sport of Fish Slapping.


Tristan Zahringer

“I put this as my second favorite fish related sport. Right behind swordfish fencing”

 Stephen Foulard cautioned:

“The first rule of Fish Club is... you don't talk about Fish Club.”

Sunday, 7 October 2018


If any clips won’t open, click on the link under them.

The Ship Song | Sydney Opera House:

The government is selling off advertising space on the Sydney Opera House, which not only belongs to Australia, but to the whole world. Who wants to take home a photo of ugly advertising from their vacation? The Opera House is a temple to the arts, not to commerce. The glorious contrast between the optical whiteness of the sails of the roof, and the blue harbour, are reminiscent of the white sails of the ships that the Australian Aboriginals first saw when the white man moved into their harbour. Or you can see white waves depicted there. It is beautiful, and a marvel of applied mathematics. 

When my kids were young we lived in Sydney. We would often get on a bus or train and have a picnic at Circular Quay. I’d encourage my kids to draw the Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. I would frequently take photos of tourists in front of those landmarks, as a gesture of goodwill. 

Creative commons, photo by Adams J.W.C.

We often walked around it, looking out at the boats on the sparkling blue harbour, and the homes of the rich across the water. We marvelled up at the white tiles on the roofs of the “sails”. I took my son to see a Shakespeare play there and took my daughter to the ballet in its halls. The view from an upper foyer balcony out to the harbour during the interval, on a sunny Sydney day, was superb. Just pure happiness. Then we went back in to watch the Firebird do her magnificent thing and Acerules was so inspired she danced all along circular Quay back to the railway station. A station, that has one of the best views in the world while you’re waiting to get off your train.

Australian Chamber Orchestra at The Sydney Opera House , a short Mozart piece:

Creative Commons, photo by

Sydney Opera House sails should not be for sale. Please all sign the petition below

Politicians have sold their souls:

Son of one of the architects appalled:

Saturday, 6 October 2018


Sorry, anyone that knows my sense of humour would realise I just couldn’t resist posting this, after I saw it on the news today, and remembered the song:

Ok, sorry, I’m going to bed now. 

PROST! - An Oktoberfest party.

All photos except for the table runner and beer ones are copyright Runningonempty. 

Well, I have had German readers for almost as long as this blog has been running, so I decided to throw an Oktoberfest party in a park yesterday. (Watch out, your country could be next!)

Cultural appreciation, not cultural appropriation. 

I learned so much while researching Oktoberfest. I had never attended one in Australia because of the reputation for drunkenness. The original celebration, though, in Munich, Bavaria, Germany, is replete with parades, colour, music, special foods, horse racing, history, beautiful costumes , fairground rides, etc. 

Here is our casual small-town Australian version (well of course the bratwürst sausages had to be barbecued, here! ) They were  specially made by our local butcher. I checked that he knew the correct recipe when I ordered, he did! Beef mince, pork mince, pork fat, certain spices.  I had to buy five kilos minimum, but that’s ok, as he said I got a discount for volume! (Still scratching my head at that one. ) Gee, they were nice sausages though! Hubby cooked onions with them. The pewter plate in the rear is a souvenir from Coburg, Germany, and a guest brought the small pretzels, that I put on a silver plate.

Acerules and I dressed up, someone asked if that is her real hair, it is! She is wearing a dress embroidered with cherries, with an off the shoulder black blouse that was adapted with lace by Katja, who does our alterations, under it. Apron was from the op (thrift) shop. Dress was from Ebay, and she can wear it on a variety of occasions. Hat was from a party shop in a local city and my costume (a red , white and black long version of the dirndl and a grey felt hat ) also came from there. 


We put up decorations, blue and white Bavarian flag bunting, (shown behind my friend):

big Oktoberfest banner, in which I had to cut air holes because it was quite windy, 

man in lederhosen cardboard cut out, fraulein cardboard cutout, blue and white vintage gingham tablecloths, blue and white vintage German embroidered table runner, saying “love is the best cook”, all purchased on Ebay (one gingham tablecloth was from a local op (thrift) shop).

Ebay image of the table runner, as I forgot to photograph the drinks table:

We had blue and white flowers, in our lead pewter tankards (it’s  not safe to drink from lead, I only use those for decoration, all the pewter we use for food and drink is lead free.) Flowers were also in my big blue pottery vase, lovely floral arrangements thanks to my florist that I always use. There were also some from my Spring garden: bluebells, forgetmenots and little white daisies. We had printed out Bavarian and German flag and coat of arms images (the top right one is an unofficial version of the German Federal flag as the official one has restricted use by law). Top left and bottom are Bavarian:

Wikipedia image print outs.

Top is an historical Bavarian coat of arms, bottom is the German flag:

Wikipedia image print outs.

We had a beer glass that read Germany, a ceramic stein (beer tankard with handle) that read Oktoberfest, a ceramic stein with the German states on it, and a big heavy glass Löwenbräu stein. All four, and the tablecloth were purchased from Ebay, and were vintage (reduce, reuse, recycle).

We also put out our lead free pewter drinkware. We took our folding chairs and table to supplement the wooden ones there, and friends also brought some.

 I had a big order in at the bakery for fresh hot dog rolls and 2 cherry pies, the only problem was the baker went away and they gave me one apple and one blueberry instead. 

I made salad, the easy way, by combining different bagged lettuces, and a salad with grated carrot and cabbage in it, then threw in some “cherry” (small) tomatoes, in our big pewter bowl. Hubby and I bought different condiments, mustards both mild and wholegrain, sauerkraut, cucumber pickles , tomato sauces. 

German biscuits and tomato nibbles brought by friends, forget me nots and daisies from our garden, vase from an op (thrift) shop:

In Australia, BYO (bring your own) can apply to food or drink, depending what the invitation says and “bring a plate” means a plate with something on it:

One nice specialty tomato sauce by Beerenberg, comes from Hahndorf in the Barossa Valley, a German bastion here in Australia. I’ve been to the Barossa, famed for it’s wineries, it’s a great place to visit, and Hahndorf is very cute:

I also supplied some fairly low price but quite drinkable pinot noir wine by Wolf Blass, also situated in the Barossa. I put it in a vintage ice bucket (shown behind):

I bought beer from Germany, 

Image is from Woolworths web site as I forgot to photograph the beer.

I made apple spritzer from sparkling mineral water and apple juice in our big pewter punch bowl. I did try to get the authentic German kind but it was going to get here too late, as coming from Western Australia. I bought lemon soft drink (soda).

Good friends went to a city in the region and bought big pretzels that she presented very nicely:

German Oktoberfest biscuits they bought:

They also brought Rösti, (German hash browns), and the lady made lovely costumes for herself and her partner. 

A few of the other guests:

Also hubby:

I’m very grateful to friends that came and those that helped with transport of goods or brought things. No businesses mentioned in this post gave me free stuff. All opinions are my own. Prost, (cheers) everybody, leave a comment!

Wolf Blass wines:

History of the famous Beerenberg sauces and jams:

Beerenberg tomato sauce:

Barossa Valley:

An Oktoberfest party is fun for you to do, during the official period in September-early October. Here is an Oktoberfest tablescape inside at home, by my fellow blogger Angelina, who states she has German roots: