In 1992. When we escaped from Sydney NSW. To a rural property of 54 hectares (135-acres.) In the picturesque Central Tablelands village of Ilford NSW. We could see first-hand the damage that cats do to the indigenous bird life.
So when the lives of our two cats ended. We didn’t replace them.
And we found that we also. Didn’t replace. Our dogs. When it was their time to chase rabbits in the sky.Our last dog. Daisy Mae. Was an almost 15 year old Tri-Coloured Rough Collie. Adored by both Victor. And me.
Her first sign of bodily failure was when her back legs wouldn’t support her inside the house. On our slippery cork tile floors.
Not a problem for us. For two years. We carried her from room to room.
Her spirit was so high. That every day. She woo-wooed her happiness at being alive.
It was the aggressive tumour growing over her right eye. That was her demise.
We knew then that her time was limited.
We decided we would let her decide when it was time to go.
Which she did.
One day. We knew. That she was ready. To say goodbye.
We are never ready. For us. It’s never a good time to say goodbye.
That morning in November 2018. When she was no longer with us.
Was a day of heartache. And misery.
It still is.
But the reality was. That with no dogs. And no cats. We were free to follow a dream.
Victor is an architect. And he’s always wanted to design and build a house for us to live in.
So we chased that dream.
And found a steep 40-hectare (100-acre) grazing property. With spectacular views. In the alpine region of the High Country of rural Victoria. In a gorgeous village of 276 people. Just below the snow line.
In January 2019. We rented a house to live in. Thinking we would be in and out in 12 months.
9 months after our purchase. And two weeks after we received permission to build on a narrow ledge 37 stories above road level. The Black Summer fires licked at our feet. Closing the only road in and out of our property. And evacuating us twice. For safety reasons.
After 12 weeks of fires. From November 2019. To the end of February 2020. The fires were finally extinguished.
And the Great Alpine Road was open.
We could finally get building materials to the site.
In March 2020. Covid 19 arrived. And tradespeople were restricted as to how far they could travel. To go to work on a project.
What was supposed to be a 12-month build? Turned into a 24-month and 3-day build.
On 17th December 2020. We moved into our house on top of our 100-acre mountain.
But we were missing something.
A dog to love. And care for.
Because of the pandemic. Rescue dogs were in short supply.
In April 2021. I contacted an organisation in rural Victoria that places rescue greyhounds. Only to be told by Kerry that we weren’t suitable. Because we didn’t have proper fencing.
In late June of that year. Kerry rang me to say she had an 8-year-old female greyhound. Serena. Who was very stable. Who would be suitable for a property with poor fencing.
Am I interested?
Am I interested???????
I consulted my partner, Victor. Who was very fuzzy. Negative fuzzy.
But I convinced him he would fall in love with Serena.
I rang Kerry back within 10 minutes. To say. YES! We will give Serena a home.
We picked Serena up on 30th June 2021.
12 months. And two weeks later.
Serena is joined at the hip with Victor. I mean. Literally. And figuratively.
She only pays attention to me. When. Victor isn’t in the house.
I’m the man. Only when. The man. Isn’t here!
Those two have a bond. That is so special. That I pinch myself. That my gut feeling. Was spot on.
That Victor and Serena. Would. Adore. Each other.
Victor feeds her. Takes her for runs twice a day on our rural property. Frets over her. Takes her with him when he posts parcels at our nearest post office. Takes her for a walk in the riverside park where we post parcels. And generally. Is chief in charge. Of her overall. Well being.
Me? I remind Serena. On a regular basis. That if it wasn’t for me. She wouldn’t be here.
I adore her too. She is. Just. The most. Wonderful. Dog ever.
She’s calm. Placid. Eager to please us. Very obedient. Rarely barks. Is very affectionate. And in true greyhound style. Is a couch potato.
For a dog that spent 8 years living in a kennel. She has adapted extraordinarily well to living in a home. And grasping what our routine is.
They say that. Once you have a greyhound. You will always have a greyhound.
And I now truly understand what that means.
Serena has poured boundless joy into our life. And we can’t imagine life without her!
Life Behind The Scenes With The Ironing Diva. Are my stories. About my ‘Life At The Top Of The Mountain’ in Swifts Creek, Victoria. The vagaries of running a worldwide business from an isolated, remote rural property. And. The many things that I love sharing with you.
Carol Jones, Ironing Diva❤️
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Who am I?
I am an ex-New Yorker. Who happily calls Australia home. I am also a daughter. A younger sister. A long-standing partner of a significant other. A businesswoman. With a quirky view of how business should be done. I am addicted to my computer. Am a software junkie. LOVE technology. But rarely use a mobile phone. I can sew. Embroider. Knit. Crochet. I’m also an experienced DIYer. Who owns my own power tools. And a toolbox full of the best gadgets a gal can have for getting the job done. I’m an adventurous cook. A keen gardener living in a challenging environment. An amateur photographer of landscapes and wildlife. A perennial student. An avid reader of everything from War and Peace. To trash and trivia. I’m outspoken. Yet discreet. I’m both tolerant. And intolerant. I’m known to not turn the other cheek. Or a blind eye. Life is never dull with my canine and feline menagerie. I’m a huge lover of birds. And all the wildlife that visit me every day on my 100-acre rural property. And I’m also a semi-hermit. Because I absolutely revel in my life of solitude ~ at the top of my mountain.
In 1994. Me and my partner, Victor Pleshev, an architect. Did what everyone said we couldn’t do. Poor as church mice from the 1992 ‘recession we had to have’. We built a worldwide business from broke. Long before the internet and email came to our rural village. It took a massive amount of hard work. And equal amounts of sacrifice. Combined with a mindset that everything is a can-do. The reward? 500,000 one-on-one customers. In 30 countries. The icing on the cake? Every product is made with love and care in rural Australia by our super-heroes. Men and women who have a disability.
You can read Our Story here.
These are my stories. In no particular order.
Designers & makers in RURAL Australia of The Fitz Like A Glove™ Ironing Board Cover, Log Lugger, Roadworks Apron, Travel Bug Shoe Bag, Mr Chin’s Laundry Bag, Sweet Shoo.
Every product is a joy to use.
Made with love and care in rural Australia by men and women who have a disability. They’re our super heroes.
They put their heart and soul into everything they do. And it shows.