Full reporting: 2019 Robertson Show

Full and THOROUGH reporting required for the show that was on last weekend. This is the 8th show we have been to since we have lived here and of course I entered as many things as I could manage given my workload and the solo parenting that was on as Rob was away for the week.

You can read a little about my past experiences with the show in these posts:

2018 Show debrief
2017 Show debrief
2016 Show debrief
2014 Show debrief
2013 Show debrief
2012 Show debrief
2011 Show debrief

I must say there were many moments throughout Wednesday last week when I was busting my arse to get the entries done, get entry forms filled out and paid (huge sums of 50c per category to enter) and get my cakes done in between everything else, that I thought it should all go into the too hard basket. But I knew the fun of the whole thing, the importance for keeping traditions alive so I persisted and got them all into the pavilion for before 9am on Thursday ready for judging.

There’s nothing like the pavilion on judging day – a hive of activity and hope in the air as people bring in their vegetables, eggs, flowers and handiwork all hoping for a ribbon. I was hopeful for the baking (having entered Anne for the first time ever) as well as a date loaf (given there were no entries last year) as well as the floral arrangements that I have had a stab of over the last few years.

Here are the floral arrangements that I created. I was quite proud of all of these…especially given how busy it was to try and get them done in between every thing else…blood, sweat and tears LITERALLY went into them. And some swearing too, for good measure.

I love creating these arrangements using what I can find in the garden and in some of the trees around the village. I also used some beautiful roses from my friends garden around the corner and some herbs from theory old herb patch at my place too (I used sage and rosemary in the country garden posy” They never take me more than 10 minutes or so as I make them up as I go…I think I am a frustrated florist at heart!

I also made Anne and a date loaf the girls also entered some paintings and poetry. We hightailed it into that pavilion looking a little frazzled but excited about the prospect ahead.

Friday morning I headed straight in to see how we went before getting on with a busy day in the shop: I wanted to check those baking entries and see how the flowers went. Controversially I saw that the date loaf that I entered was the SOLO entry for the category and was placed with a SECOND place ribbon. What a blow! Not good enough for first, even though it was the only one there. Those country women are TOUGH.

You can see that it did sink a little and it looks a little underdone, I get the decision, but man it made me laugh. A cake that didn’t exist, was better than my cake! #dategate will always be remembered for the show this year and I should be grateful at least that they threw me a bone with second place (I could have got a slap in the face with a highly commended).

Poor Anne, well I don’t know where I went wrong with her – I think it was because there was a rise in her and she wasn’t completely flat?! She was cut and left to the side. What a blow to the confidence! I won’t give up though…and was reassured today when I was in the chemist and saw that the their daughter won the junior cookery section with her very own Anne. So she was still a winner…even though it wasn’t from me!

Where did you go wrong Anne? How did I let you down so?!

I was happy to see some ribbons for the floral arrangements though: first in Autumn Glory and From a Country Garden and second place in the other two. I went home laughing and crying Friday at the results…you have got to love a country show!

Saturday I took the girls there for the afternoon and evening and a chance to have a look around again, watch some of the great displays (like who can hold onto an electric fence the longest) potato races, the demo derby, plenty of rides and hot chips, showbags and the odd rum and coke. The best kind of fun! I love seeing the photos each year of the kids growing up as the years pass by.

Another great year of the show! I had to exist stage left early in the evening as Mags took a turn after the teacup ride made her feel a little bit woozy – throw in some hot chips and show bags and she was DONE. The big girls stayed and watched the derby and came home as happy as they can be: a chance to hang out with their mates and be independent and grown up – it’s the stuff childhood memories are made of.

And of course I have a fire in my belly to come back stronger then ever with that date loaf…I won’t stop until that elusive 1st prize is mine again. IT WILL BE SO!

Do have any great country show memories?
Ever had a CWA burn like this one?
Got some tips for a flat bake for me?


  1. I think Joe does a better Ben Quilty than Ben does! Love your work Joe!! 😀

  2. Ann-Maree says

    Did all that in my childhood in the country, Beth. I won Best Sponge Sandwich three years in a row…..and have never made one since. We used to practice and practice .Did a stint shadowing the judges and wasn’t that an eye opener! I think I lost all my competitor juices after that . now I do it for fun and pleasure…no judging for meeee!

  3. This is the best! I swear one year I’m going to enter a show. Could this be the year??

  4. This brought back such great memories, I use to ride horses at the Robbo show when I was a teenager.
    I’m sure your Anne was marvellous by the way, judge probably couldn’t taste the subtleties of Anne after trying all those cakes 😁

  5. Love your work Beth – well done!! And that catch-a-duck stall has to be the most sophisticated I’ve ever seen – they look real!

  6. Man, I LOVE a country show. Ours is in November, so this makes me excited for what is to come! I am going to try my luck at Anne this year, after failing miserably with my chocolate cake last year (but Aunt Tricia’s sponge came through with the goods for me!). And, I’ll be on maternity leave this year, so I am entering EVERYTHING! I want the overall champion ribbon…
    Congrats on your wins, but shit those losses hurt!

  7. Beth, can you confirm or deny whether the judges actually taste the cakes? Apart from being cut in half they look untouched!

  8. I FREAKED when I saw the ‘Quilty’ painting. Ben Quilty is my favourite. Can’t wait for his exhibition to hit Brissie. I use his stuff in class when speaking to boys about masculinity. Good stuff. I LOVED your floral arrangements this year. How sweet is Mags’ painting?!

  9. My 16yo daughter entered an intricate artwork (papercut of Van Gogh’s Starry Night) in our show a couple of weeks ago, first time she’s ever entered The Show. Only one in her category, only papercut… Not. A Razoo. Not even a commendation! Ripped off, I thought. Good on Maggie for her painting 🙂

    • Thanks Mel – she was stoked! That sounds so gorgeous! Harps was most upset that the lego that shouldn’t be made from kits was made from kits!

  10. Man, those CWA women are tough cookies (second place ones, though, probably!). I think they should have to taste all of the entries, you can’t always judge a book by its cover, as they say. LOVED all your floral arrangements. You missed your calling as a florist! Do they judge the flowers upon arrival?

  11. Yep that is soooooo Ben Quilty that painting.

    You are lucky Beth – maybe you can get some lessons.


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