Cee’s On the Hunt for Joy Challenge: Week 1 – Get Outside

On the Hunt for Joy Challenge: Week 1 – Get Outside

Summer Joy

These photos were taken last year in January at Balmoral Baths, Sydney, Australia. Although I can’t walk on the beach anymore, I enjoyed watching the young and old having fun in the water and on the sand.

With my husband still in hospital, I haven’t been to Balmoral this year. But as soon as he is up and about, we’ll return to our favourite spot for fish and chips and a leisurely walk along The Esplanade. 🙂

Happy weekend everyone! ❤

Copyright (C) 2020 Irina Dimitric


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Sunday Trees – 424 – Spotted Gum


Spotted gum,  an endemic Australian tree, is one of my favourites.  Its bark creates artwork that no artist can match. Well, that’s just my humble opinion. 🙂

Some close-ups…

I was tempted to peel off some of the bark… 🙂

It’s heartbreaking to watch on TV the raging bushfires across Australia destroying not only these beautiful trees, but also wild life and human properties. Spare a thought for everyone affected by this disaster, especially the heroic fire fighters . <)

Happy New Year everyone! And stay safe if you live in Australia in areas affected by the bushfires! ❤

(C) Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric


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Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge – Basically Two Colours

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Basically Two Colors

Merry Christmas! ❤ Red and green


Did you mail any Christmas cards this year?  ❤ Red and white


My husband has been in Emergency three times this year! May the hospital staff be blessed forever! ❤ Blue and red

Happy Holidays everyone! ❤

(C) Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric




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Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge – Mufti and Pax


Peace be with you ❤


(C) Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: All Sorts of Pets, Living to Stuff Animals to Pet Rocks

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Longing for Blue Skies (haiku)


Today in Sydney. I was going to visit my husband in hospital, but the smoke is choking me. We’ve never experienced anything like it before. He is fine in his airconditioned room. Please spare a thought and prayer for firefighters and farmers and everyone affected by these devastating bushfires. Pray for rain!


Longing for blue skies
When will this smoke nightmare end?
Winter, come back soon!

© Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric

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Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge – White – White Carnation (haiku)

I love carnations of all colours.

White carnations symbolise innocence, pure love and good luck.

This bunch was given to me by a dear friend. I think my friend sensed I needed a lot of good luck these days.

I tried out different backgrounds to see which one would work best… and the funny thing is I like them all!


And here is a haiku:


White carnation bloom

For purity, love, good luck

Nature’s precious gift



Happy Friday to all ! ❤


©Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric


Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: White

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Jacarandas (haiku) – FOTD Challenge, 28 November 2019

G’day folks! It’s  a LOVELY sunny day in Sydney. Jacarandas are still mesmerising, but not for long.

“Jacarandas sway

Scattered petals on the ground

Goodbye November! ”


Wishing you all a very happy Thursday! ❤


(C) Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric


Flower of the Day (FOTD) Challenge

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Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge – Red

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Red

The colour of Love, the colour of Blood, the colour of Energy, the colour of Life, etc!


My hubby Sasha loves cherry tomatoes, the sweet ones. He’s been in hospital on and off this year and is now recovering from surgery at North Shore Private Hospital in Sydney, Australia, where I go every day to see him. Although being in hospital is not much fun, I know he will be happy to know I’m having fun on WordPress when alone at home.


Greetings from my husband’s teddy bear. ❤ I gave it to him for Valentine’s Day this year. It sits on the kitchen table guarding his box with medications.


I took a walk through the rooms looking for the colour red. This is part of a Serbian table runner. It reminds me of my old home.


And this is a box with a Croatian design. It’s full of coins. Not gold coins! 🙂 Another trinket connecting me to my roots.


Finishing up this photo essay with a painting by a dear friend who was our sponsor in 1963 when we applied for a migrant visa to Australia. It represents two figures, his wife Vera, my school mate, on the left and Nino Sydney, a famous architect, on the right. It looks like Nino is in deep thought, maybe designing a new house. 🙂 We are all retired now, each of us swallowing pills to keep going, but we love to meet or talk on the phone sharing our news, some bad , some good and some funny too.

Wishing you all a happy day! ❤


©Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric

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Smoggy Day in Sydney – Haiku

My heart goes out to the victims of devastating bushfires in Australia. The smog in Sydney today reached New Delhi levels. I had to keep the windows shut in the morning. Then I took a taxi, air-conditioned, luckily, to visit my hubby in hospital, air-conditioned too. On the way back, after lunch, the smog had dispersed. The two photos were taken from my balcony this morning. 

Haze over the bay

Sydney town shrouded in smog

The bush is on fire


(C) Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric

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Growing Up In The 40s – Pre-War Years in Ljubljana – WWII


Dear Readers,

After four years I’m finally coming back to this memoir. I’d like to finish it while memories are still floating in my mind. At times I’m overwhelmed by panic that there isn’t much time left. I’m 84.

I’m glad that Dad’s whole story in captivity is told in a short biography for Hadouch’s Lamsdorf-Lambinowice museum in Poland. In this new post I’ve added a few details.

You can read Part 9 here.

Part 10

Ljubljana  –  Pre-War Years


A few sketchy recollections of those pre-war years in Ljubljana remain etched in my mind. Oma was concerned about my skinny frame, so she would take me down to the coffee lounge (they lived in a big apartment above) to fatten me up. Christina, the cashier, was there with her white fluffy German spitz. I don’t know, though, whether her dog stayed in the coffee lounge all the time, but I can see her clearly sitting by the cash register with the fluffy white dog beside her.

For breakfast,  I was served a soft-boiled egg , a bread roll with butter, and a cup of white coffee. I was a very slow eater. Poor Oma! Although I didn’t have a sweet tooth as a child, I liked vanilla ice cream, particularly the aroma of vanilla. Vanilla and coffee aroma bring back  memories of Kavarna Evropa, on the corner of Slovenska and Gosposvetska Streets, and my Oma and Opa. My niece, who lives in Ljubljana, found this link on Google. I was thrilled to bits when she sent it to me. The whole building is known as Tavčarjeva palača,  and is best remembered for Kavarna Evropa on the ground floor when the popular coffee house was owned by my granddad Anton Tonejc from 1905 – 1948.


Opa loved taking me for a walk to Tivoli Park, a walking distance from Kavarna Evropa. At the kiosk he would buy some pine nuts for squirrels and a lollipop for me.

The squirrels would come right to me to eat the pine nuts out of my hand.

Veljko and Seka, my older cousins, would be there, too.

We were looked after by our respective nannies. Mima, a bespectacled Slovenian lass, was my cousins’ nanny, while my nanny was a refined lady, tall, blonde, with piercing blue eyes, who spoke to me in German. I called her Fräulein Fini. Her name was Finika. I knew German before I knew my mother tongue.


I remember Fräulein Fini very well. She was strict, but I don’t think she ever hit me. She used to visit when I grew up.

But I do not remember another Christina, my very first nanny, a Slovenian girl, the same age as my mother. Christina loved my mother, for my mother treated her as a friend. They corresponded until the end of their days.

Christina had sent these photos to my mother in Sydney. She made the Slovenian traditional dress herself and helped other members of the church choir group. With such a gentle face, I’m sure she was a very loving and tender nanny.

And I remember the magic of Christmas Eve in Ljubljana. The wait. The closed door. The door behind which Kriskindl was going to work his magic. Then the bells rang behind the closed door, the door opened and let the magic cast its spell on us children. The huge Christmas tree,  reaching up  to the ceiling, was aglow with little candles, sparkling with sparklers,  baubles and glittering streamers, with gifts in colourful boxes piled up beneath it, next to Mary, baby Jesus, Joseph, the three Wise Men, and the Shepherds with all the animals in tow. This Christmas fairyland, bathed in the scent of fresh pine mixed with the mellow scent of melting wax, remains a cherished memory of Oma and Opa and their luxurious apartment above their kavarna.

Orthodox Christmas was celebrated, too. The soldiers, ordered by my godfather General Orlović, who was also Oma’s and Opa’s  friend, would bring up to the apartment the badnjak, an oak branch, decorated with oranges and mandarins and Serbian flags, and they would place it next to the grandfather’s clock.  Which brings me to Opa sitting in his armchair nearby and dozing off. And I was looking down from the window next to the badnjak,  watching the military parade passing by. The year was 1940. I was 5 years old. It was a good year.


I like this photo of my “kum” (pronounce “koom”, meaning godfather). Kum Orle was my father’s friend,  that’s why he became my “kum”. He was also one of the King’s adjutants,  and when the war started in Yugoslavia in 1941, he went into exile. The dedication in this photo reads: ” To the esteemed Misses and Mister Tonejc”.

During the war, my mother and I were always invited to celebrate Christmas at our friends’ homes in Zagreb or in Bregana. But I missed my dad, Oma and Opa and my cousins and my Aunty Silva and Uncle Vladimir. I missed Ljubljana and Kavarna Evropa. My happy childhood was thrown into turmoil.

(To be continued)

©Copyright 2019 Irina Dimitric. All rights reserved.

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