Sweet as.

Often when preparing for an occasion as I am sure a lot of people realise, there is a bit of hard work involved. You know? How many are coming? how much food to prepare? Who likes what to eat & what they don’t like? Do I need to prep the day before? Extra chairs maybe an extra table? I wonder if I can drop that dead tree? You know stuff like that, oh wait, yes, did you catch that? The what, dead tree?

The reason for the tree drop is that these types of trees as they grow they twist & then when they are tall they twist & drop they are reasonably shallow rooted. Cutting down these types can be very dangerous as they can untwist & flick as you cut, tossing you & chainsaw.

Quite some time back Cuz & I cut it right back to a manageable but tall stump. Mum & I have been doing this all over the property, cut trees usually at hip height. Wait a year & we push the stumps over & pull em out, too easy. This stump was quite an eyesore from the kitchen window, a positive was the Kookaburras would use it as a lookout from time to time. Sorry Kooky it’s gotta go. I can’t find a before pic anywhere.

Well this stump every time I pushed on it just wobbled, you know, like an old lady arm waving goodbye. I grabbed the old bits of tie down rope that I had knotted together, snapped from previous tree stump dragging ventures. Tossed the rope up & around as high as I could get it. Now PULL & LEAN on the rope….wobble wobble, nothing. I had over 10kilos less weight on myself to put into it, which I do feel better for, but really. I could see the ground lift & drop like this thing was hanging on as hard as it could to the earth below. I went for reinforcements, the spade, dug around to get a better look at where the root system was & broke what I could. I tried again. Positioning myself safely it tilted & wobbled & cracked & popped & finally it was down.

I danced & kicked up my heels as best one can when their boots are loaded with wet clay soil(wetting the ground as I dug helped). It was all a little effort but fun all the same.

Dragged & rolled the rusty old drum from under the veranda where it has been stored for years & using the angle grinder cut out 4 stars & a half moon. If I had the right tools I would’ve cut out a whole countryside scene, lol. At least this way we can sit around the drum & toast marshmallows from the stars or moon. Added a new Mulberry tree as well.(air propagated? from main Mulberry tree).

I had a little extra money in the account & bought a cheap pop up marquee, which I will cover the roof in wire & let the wisteria vine go nuts. As the cover rots the vine will create shade at least. Between Mum doing a bit of a clean up & weeding, together we got the job done & the yard looked great.

What was all this in preparation for? Mothers Day of course, just for us oh & the family. My Daughter joined us later in the day & my son rang me at 7:30am. It poured with rain most of the day, so no drum lighting but the little dome barby worked a treat & with one side wall up, that came with the marque it was quite toasty warm. A little hard yakka for the fam is never a sacrifice, always a joy.

Walter was a little distressed that we were burning what he thought was his sticks, once he found his ball all was well.

Oh yeh, the food prep was potatoes & pumpkin wrapped in foil to cook in the hot coals & a couple of snags(sausages) & chopped up onion cooked in a pan on top. Of course no Mothers Day is complete without a heart shaped Pav. I hope all you Mums had a sweet as Mothers Day.

JOYESSNESSNESS

I have been completely stoked at the thought of sharing this one. I don’t know if I mentioned my son came home for a visit? Last week or the week before? I don’t know, it’s May already. Fair dinkum time fly’s when ya having fun.

Wil led Danny out of Danny’s paddock & Zina flipped out at the thought of being left behind, silly duffa. I stood in her paddock telling her “if she calmed down, I would take her out as well”. Did you know horses speak human? Danny 25yr old has for years now, I speak & point he knows what I mean. As for Zina 10yr old she’s learning to speak us & of course us her. As soon as I told her what was happening & showed her the halter, she lowered her head & walked over to me, so I could get the halter on. She was still excited but behaved. Danny looks at Zina & you can almost see him roll his eyes with a “kid really, calm down”.

Shocking angle but too cute

We saddled up Danny first, it had been 3yrs since he was ridden. Pony club sporting event, 1st place for his little team.

At the sight of the saddle Danny was a little “what on earth do you 2 think you are doing, really”? Wil is a bit of a light weight but strong, so he rode Danny. First around the yard as we wanted to check Danny was sound. Danny being Danny was quite keen when he realized we were going out for a ride! Mind you there have been some rides out where we have crossed the road to come home backwards, he’s been so keen to get home.

Grins all round

I saddled up Zina & whilst Wil road Danny up to the top of our property(the only flat surface we have to ride, we call it the arena). I led Zina all the way, after all our gates at present aren’t permanent & you need to be on the ground to open them, was my excuse for not wanting to die….lol. No really it’s just another project I need to get done, note to self, fix gates!

You see this would be the first time for Zina up in the arena. I have ridden her out the front of the property, (only place with grass during drought) in the backyard & in the round yard.

She was chilled out to walk up. Then I up into the saddle I went, best feeling ever & I asked her to move forward, walk at first to warm up & get acquainted with her surroundings. Alert but chill. Now a little more please & she said “no”, as only horses know how to say no…lol.

Test 1

Don’t panic I had a giggle as it really was just a test to see what she could get away with. She slipped & scared herself.

Toss kick flick

Smaller circles not much better, head down bum up, toss kick flick. Sorry Zina this is hilarious, I’m glued in (truly I would have felt if she was being really serious well before I hit the ground, haha). I pulled her around & had a quick word with her, tried small circles again, she went to try but realized it was just not worth the effort.

Meanwhile Wil is trotting around on Danny so gracefully, Danny’s buck is like a rocking horse & we know its rock around the clock & he’s fine & this only if he hasn’t been ridden for a while.

We always ask with our feet first, flamin show off.

I’m in the middle of the arena dancing it out with Zina, whilst Danny was prancing around the arena with Wil chill & happy along for the ride. I did want to shove Wil off the saddle. lol. We have had a lot of fun in the past playing shove off games.

settling down

Soon Zina settled & it was such a beautiful day we cruised around the arena, weaving in & out the tyres I have placed out & going around & around the trees compliments of nature.

Wil wanted to have a ride on Zina. As Wil has a back injury that we need to be careful of & I knew at this point Zina was chill enough for Wil to handle. Wil handles horses very well, so up he went.

I must say my legs did the whole jelly thing & I nearly sat on the ground when I got off the horse, love jelly legs. Wil & Zina had fun it was great to see her ridden & have her work a little more, balance & getting her to actually correct.

Not quite but still too fun.

It was only a half hour ride but wow it was so great. Wil rode Zina back down to the yard, by this time she had her second wind & tip toed the whole way, Wil handled her beautifully. I led Danny in front to be safe.

It was the perfect moment a time that I haven’t had or felt for the longest time. I am a little teary eyed even writing this, if you are passionate about something & it is a part of who you are, to reconnect with that after a long absence is something that can’t be explained.

Enjoying the time, lol my boots kept getting caught under the side of the saddle, that’s why my boot is sticking out all weird. Note to self wear shorter boots.
Most funnerer time ever.

Whatever you are up to today may a moment be your soul happy place.

Melted Happy

I don’t even know where to start I have had a bonza time of late. I’m weak & weary but my soul is well.

It is flamin freezing for this time of year, Autumn, so much so that I have had the fire going in the mornings. Which is always a cosy way to start the day.

The chooks are happy in their new nesting boxes. They are such funny creatures of habit, with so many nesting boxes, they first went to the same position that the old wooden box was in. They are spreading out a bit more now & “bonus” !we are getting more eggs. yay. I need to raise the wooden box, as clearly chooks are classy birds & prefer a highrise apartment nest. I’m thinking at this point a reality chook show is on the horizon, “Hen Haven Highrise” or “Featherington downes” “How to Live Eggscellently” a chooks renovating show?

At present its a little more makeshift than magnificent.

Mum & I were having a rest at our Little Tuscany, Walter was extremely content digging into a teeny tiny mouse hole close by.

Then shared his joy as such fun he was having. A heart melting moment.

If he catches mice he takes them delicately in his mouth & sets them free gently in another area of the yard, great help? Big lovable squishy sod.

It’s this time of year that we love to melt in the sun. You know it’s cold in the morning & everything is cold to touch, by midday the surface of everything is tingly warm to touch, so here it starts. The melting begins.

My son came home for a visit always a beyond joy time, we went to visit a Besty. Besty feeds visiting birds from her veranda, which is always fun to watch. Then plop, it was a literal plop sound, a young Butcher bird( have the prettiest song) landed on the plastic rolled up barbecue cover that was in the sun. All of sudden it melted, not the plastic, the bird.

In turn melting our hearts, even resting its head for a moment smiling at us.

Beyond gooey cute

Even the geese in town were melting as they do. I was having a bit of lunch & unwinding from the hustle & bustle of town, ok, so it’s not as busy as most towns, but for us that will do. haha. As the geese were walking across the asphalt of the riverside carpark, one by one, they dropped. Not so much spreading out, as tuning out as geese do. Not even moving for cars passing through everyone had to go around.

You can see where the flood came up to across river, the muddy leaves, on the banks. God Bless that amazing little wharf battered but forever stands.
Even Turbo had a melting moment

Don’t you just wanna squish your cold fingers through her warm soft squishy cheeks. She would glare at you if you did, but at least she’d know she’s loved, right?

Whatever your day ahead or week or month ahead may bring. May you forever melt in the warmth of the sun & your nest be full of the love of family & friends to keep your soul squishy loved & happy.

I get a little excited.

If your going to find the bright side of being unwell, (its forgetting to put up a title, call it what you want, lol. I had forgotten to title this blog.) well for me was researching, (when my brain would allow) & the, well I don’t know, the downside to that, if you can call it that? is I get a little spend happy. Don’t get me wrong, I consider us to be hugely blessed to have what we have & we budget, live by faith & have never gone without. Let me clarify here, in some peoples mind a big spend is hundreds of dollars, for us it’s $20 & over or even $5 depending on the budget for that week. Living the inground pool lifestyle from the banks of the muddy dam.

We are trying to establish ourselves as land living for living land & our land is now more alive than ever. Within the next ten years we will truly be on our way to harvesting, processing, drying, jamming, pickling & fermenting & whatever other do my byself methods you can add. If we move everything will be here for the next land lovers.

For years we have been purchasing from a company well & truly south of us, much colder climate. Long story short almost everything we have purchased has been unsuccessful. The company seeds have been hit & miss also. I am pretty disappointed as it is supposedly quite a reputable company that provide a lot of heritage plants & seeds. The only thing I can put the hit & mostly miss down to is climates being so varied??? No biggy we just move on.

On much further research & again through trial & error we have decided to purchase North of us. I have found 2 beautiful nurseries that stock just what we are looking for & produced in a climate much closer to our own. I just purchased a couple of things a few months ago to start with & doing beautifully.

Dahlia

Just one of the purchased plants that are doing extremely well.

Now for the next order I went a little bigger. Blue Java(banana), White Mulberry, Coffee tree & Clumping Bamboo. All boxed beautifully, established well & healthy in size & colour. Is this what all my plants should have looked like upon delivery? I have never had them this healthy before. These were also nowhere near as expensive as our previous purchases. I am beyond excited to get them planted & watch them grow.

I have already potted up the coffee tree & will keep it indoors, the last 2 Coffee trees I purchased from previous place ended up in the compost bin. This one looks 10 times better. The other plants I am so excited, I have since planted the white mulberry down amongst the other fruit trees. The banana I have chosen a place for but I need to collect things for geese protection around it. Clumping bamboo, I will get established in the yard somewhere & then have a go at planting it as a living fence…. Too excited. I have planted tagasaste as a start for living fence, but finding it extremely slow growing.

We have a nursery down the road that can be a little pricey & do & have bought from them with a bit of hit & miss results. Hope to purchase more from them during their sales, we will probably mainly get our natives during their sales. Love supporting locals when we can.

On final news from Frolic & Feed here. I managed to get back in the saddle, yay…. It was so great to take a deep breathe & actually breath. Zina was great, mind you I am not asking too much of her until I am strong enough. Between the ears of my pony is the best way to see our world. I managed to ride her all the way back to the paddocks much to Danny’s delight.

Not the greatest angle but such fun.
I always love a yarn with my ponies & they always seem to listen.
Is that not the sweetest face ever.

Thanks so much for dropping by & thankyou for being you.

Aint she a Beaut?

Autumn is here, not that the humidity is aware of it yet, I feel like we should be sittin on a log drying out with the local cormorants.

Whilst I am waiting for things to dry out, we have had more showers nothing too drastic though. I kinda wanna go buy more water tanks, probably good we don’t have the money for more. haha. I’d have water tanks everywhere. Don’t worry I’d paint pretty pictures on them, of course.

I haven’t been feeling 100% of late. Stress does horrendous things to your body(bed ridden for 5+ days). I am coming good now & getting stronger every day. It can take a little over a month to regain my full strength when I’m struck down like this, which thankfully isn’t often. My Mum is such an awesome support, we toddle along in our moments & manage quite well really.

I am a little excited, the next step in my organising is almost complete. Now those of you who have been hanging with me for a while, will know that I use what resources I have & my project list seems to be forever bound. Never a burden always a joy. This took me a little longer to complete with my health at present, my determination often out ways that, it does feed my soul being creative. Ok lets start.

I have a beautiful family friend who home-schooled her boys. A relative of theirs had made them desks out of old supermarket shelving just awesomely fantastic. The boys finished school & the desks were heart-warmingly gifted to us. I had them in the house as desks for my kids & then one was my sewing cupboard & then up to the flat they went as spare cupboards, they have been put to great use & did well. Now they are in their forever home.

TA DA

Is that not the most adorable little garden shed you have ever seen. In time it will be painted & prettied up.

Aint she a beaut. A simple u shaped frame holds the roof at his highest point , I am yet to screw down the tin roof, it is tied securely for now. I need to be feeling a little stronger to be up a ladder at the moment. An old semi trailer panel holds the roof at the front creating a perfect slope for run off. I will set up a water catchment of some sort there somewhere. Just a few pennies for a new tank there would be nice. haha. I didn’t need a huge building & the door for the greenhouse is inside the shed so I can pot & prepare in any weather. Yes, I could enclose the front as well but with our heat being what it is the more air flow the better. The desks have fronts that fold down so I can sit & work if need be. I now have somewhere safe to store seeds, as I have put in an old metal locker as well so no rats/mice can chew & destroy.

This side faces Little Tuscany, I have since hung a couple of things to add a little more character to it, if that’s possible.
It looks lovely in the evening light, don’t you think?

Before if I was going to do gardening, it would be organise seeds in the house, then gather tools needed from the shed near the house. Collect seed trays from behind the greenhouse, put it all together somewhere & pot up. I know it doesn’t sound too dramatic but if it is raining, too awkward & the time it would take for me to organise would often do my head in before I had even started. I’m a little OCD when it comes to the practicality of things.

Now everything is accessible. The potting shed is near the compost for soil when needed. The greenhouse is attached to the garden shed & all are only a hop ski & jump away from vegiedom.

You can see the blue desk front, so cool.

I had tidied up a bit after I took this photo(of course). I have pathways wide enough to buzz around on the ride on when needed, which in turn makes it easier for Mum with her walker & me with the trusty wheelbarrow. It is all slowly coming together when the weather is grand & when there are no fire restrictions, we can fire up the little pizza oven in Little Tuscany, which is smack bang in the middle of it all. Pick from the garden our toppings & enjoy. The anticipation is too too excitement.

For an added bonus. Just before I had started the build I had a pile of containers that were used for water storage, well now we have water tanks & as my chooky flock is growing, I decided the containers would be great nesting boxes. The happy accident was the way I cut them resulted in water & feed trays for new chicks.

Bonus right?

I have left the handles on the back so as I can tip the nesting boxes up for ease of cleaning & the little feed & water troughs that resulted will be so great for teeny tiny chickens. I know I will acquire more teeny tiny chickens in the future as it is getting harder & harder to drive past the produce with the chickens for sale sign out front. “Look straight ahead Linda don’t stop”, I often wonder how painful I look when I drive past. Its just too much to bare. haha

If Spring is sprung for you or Autumn has arrived as it has for us. May you be ever blessed ever well & may it all be well with your soul.

From that to this.

Can you see what’s wrong with this picture other than the obvious clean up which is one of many projects? Keep looking it’s not too hard to miss.

Ok so I will zoom in for you, yes my Zina had decided that as I was running late getting breakfast she would just open her gate & wander over & help herself. She had only polished off about 3 or 4 biscuits as opposed to the 3 or bales she no doubt had planned on devouring. She is so malnourished isn’t she? look at her looking over her butt at me. I told her if she wanted to continue being proud of her butt as all mares are she didn’t need to eat all that was stored in the float. I mean for crying out loud look at all the greenery around her.

Then I think it was like 2 days or maybe the next day the rain bomb hit us, it is still going.

You have probably seen on the news? Its a little damp over our side of the country at the moment & funnily enough it’s the one time in a short reprieve from the rain, that is our weather, Mum & I went for a little drive. We are fortunate where we live to have access to a small look out. It gives us a glimpse of an idea, of how things are going, without putting ourselves or others in any sort of danger.

Feel free to click through, all the photos were taken with my phone so not great, but hopefully you’ll get the gist.

First we took little drive around a few of our surrounding streets.

Then we headed up to the look out.

The first 3 photos are spanning from right/north to left/south over our town, you can just see the roof of the barbecue area cover, the children’s park swings & climbing gym are all well & truly under. The carparks under our supermarkets are under but the supermarkets are open well they were yesterday any way.

A little closer to town, Gotta love us Aussies we will stand around & have a yarn about anything, but we always prepared with the dingy on the roof of the work ute, cause ya just never know when a spot of fishing might be available or ready to rescue at any given moment.

The one thing we are hoping is that no lives are lost & livestock is well & safe. Our farmers get warning via the bush telegraph, from way up river it travels all the way into town. We have cattle farms right next to town so we have farmers close to our doorstep.

Neighbours behind us get blocked in so they use another neighbours driveway to go through, to my friends paddocks & park at their front gate so as they can get into town if needed. There is a lot that goes on in our little town Which is just so beautiful & full of character & characters. I wouldn’t want to be in any other town really.

So much to give.

Lets start here shall we!

Our roses just keep giving. Between the aroma of the orange blossom & the butterfly bush, as you pass by them wandering down to the roses. Depending on the humidity of the day it hits you, Oh to bottle it, it would last longer than a drought in a desert, I’m sure of it.

What I am really here to share with you today is, what we have been enjoying abundantly for the last few days & what I did with these??????

I give you our passionfruit.

I know right its the fruit vine that just keeps giving, we are still bumping heads with them as we walk through the archway. Now all the recipes were double the doses as really we were just overwhelmingly blessed. Approx. 70 passionfruit in total. Just this first picking.

Please excuse the order for which I write these out, I am no pro at this, so here goes. I’ll start with the well known

Passionfruit butter/curd.

125g butter,3/4cup of sugar. I always use less, no need for all that sweet when the fruit itself is full of sweetie goodness. Approx. 15 passionfruit makes 3/4cup passionfruit pulp, 4egg yolks. Throw it in a saucepan over a low heat stir till it thickens, roughly 15 to 20mins, then pour into sterilized jars. Oh my crickey!!!! Yum. You can always sieve the fruit if you don’t want so much seed.

Next up

Passionfruit bliss balls

Approx. 6 passionfruit for this one or 1/4cup of pulp, squash juice out through a sieve using a wooden spoon( I did actually leave the pulp in the sieve over a saucepan whilst I did other things, made for quicker sieving) 1/2cup desiccated coconut, 1/2cup rolled oats, 1/2cup ground almonds, 4dates, 1tspn coconut oil. Add all the dry ingredients to the food processor first, then add the rest process till smooth, then roll into balls, roll in shredded coconut to coat & refrigerate. I did, surprisingly find this one a little bland, next time I think I would add a little lemon zest or pineapple juice. Still yum treats though.

Last but not least

Passionfruit cordial

Oh my my crickey. This cordial will just blow you away with yummy passion fruity goodness. Again you don’t have to add as much sugar. The recipe asked for 1cup of sugar, I used less than a cup for double the recipes ingredients.

1cup sugar, 1cup lemon juice, 1cup of passionfruit pulp, 1+1/2cups of water. Place it all in a saucepan over low heat till slightly thick pour through sieve let cool refrigerate or freeze. The result is

Oh I nearly forgot, I don’t know how? I didn’t get a chance to get a photo of this one boo hoo. Nigellas chocolate passionfruit mousse. I found this recipe on the internet. I totally forgot to buy white chocolate, I used a mix of dark & milk choc chips. This recipe would have been yummier believe it or not, with the white choc as the milk choc seemed to make the mousse a little too tangy with the passionfruit. How did I fix it you ask? well just make some meringue, using the left over egg whites from the passionfruit butter, spread it over the mousse when it has chilled to a deliciously bubbly texture of yum moussie goodness, it cuts through the tang, ‘perfection’.

Well I am almost passion fruited out, lol just kidding, I had 4 off the vine for lunch in the yard the other day, whilst working off all the yummy stuff made from passion fruits. Then the next day, I popped a banana, ice cubes, passionfruit cordial & water into a blender & yum to the yum a refreshing slushy.

Preparing the soil & planting seeds in the dome garden & fixing the ride on mower(I had to drill a hole through the base plate to bolt on new mower blade) as the grass was way too thick & long for anything else to go through it. Job done. Giving Zina her weekly soothing wash. Packing away tools from start of kitchen make over. Taking a trip to the city(Port Macquarie) 1/2hr away.

My very first Dahlia flower almost fully open I think its shy.

Just a few of my joyous adventures last week.

Their back and we have?

They have changed their flight path. We haven’t had them pass over in well, my friend & I were just talking about it the other day, it’s probably been about a year maybe longer. A lot of people freak out about them especially horse owners, due to the potential Hendra virus they carry, we have never had an issue & it’s only droppings & contact with a sick one that can make these quirky looking mammals contagious.

They create quite the eerie seen as their flight is absolutely silent, I give you the Flying Fox cloud.

Writing of silent flight, check out this little beauty, having a drink from the top of the compost area, I think I have posted a pick of this variety before? I cant help it they are just so beautiful. We have an exponential amount of butterflies lately who knew they would be so hard to photograph. I would love to know what it is on our property that is giving them such a buzz, it’s hilarious their flight is silently psychotic. The yard is full of beautiful crazy.

A couple of surprises this week, oh I cant wait to show you. Check out these little cuties. This is a time I never tire of.

Our little hen menagerie is growing so well. I find we have a better survival rate with just a few at a time. Also I wait till they have all hatched & healthy then I move the mother & chicks to the nursery pen. Then clean out all chook bedding. I have found leafage from the property the best nesting material as the eucalypt from the leaves keeps the mites away. Alas with all this great rain we’ve been getting there is no dry leafage anywhere. I will create a dry leaf storage area somewhere! Don’t panic it wont be a huge project, I hope?

We have a dog accurately named Princess, I think we should have named Turbo something after royalty as she does pick princessy places to sleep, for instance could their be anywhere more sparkly than the beautiful cover my Mum made for me. In the midst of sparkling luxury she dreams of an opulent life.

I just love how her little paws are resting under her chin.

One last treat, I know right! How could there be more you say. Ok so I have a worm farm that I made from an old chest freezer. I lined the bottom of the freezer with debris(that someone said was ridiculous to keep, I was not going to explain my reasons for keeping it, sometimes its not worth explaining) then a layer of fine chicken wire over the debris then a layer of greenhouse mesh over the top of the wire. Allowing worm juice to sieve through without allowing the worms to escape. A layer or mulch then compost soil then scraps (nothing acidic) then the worms. Well I have been adding scraps & collecting worm juice for a while now & I noticed these 2 green stalks growing out of the soil in the worm farm. I just left them as I thought well they will probably die off after a bit, anyway. Nope they got taller & taller I had forgotten about them & yesterday I did some mateneance on the worm farm I thought, I will pull these plants out, which I did. You wont believe what I found a happy accident, well I’m hoping anyway. Attached to the ends of these green stalks were avocado seeds with long tap roots already forming, the seeds had split & grown in the beautiful worm farm soil, mmm what else could I try???? Walter was happy for us as well. I have transplanted them into pots for now. As we purchase some produce from the supermarket& some from the organic fruit stalls I have no idea which is which. I cant wait to see what they do. Even if they don’t fruit, we get excited about anything that grows & the root system of these run deep thus keeping the soil & drawing moisture from deep underground. Hopefully instead of 2 Avocado trees I will now have 4. More to share, yay always bonus.

The pen you see behind Walter is going to be the pig pen another future story I will be so excited to tell.

The tip of the thicker stalk had been eaten off by something.

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It’s shiny & pretty & yes I have a bits & pieces of final touches to do, for now it is all systems a go again, too excitement.

Whatever the days ahead have for you, may they be filled with awesome surprises, I love that you dropped by & well, thanks for just being the amazing wonderful you.

Poor little darlin.

Hello beautiful bloggers, I do hope you are all well, I love reading & catching up with my peeps, all my follow family friends.

As some of you may know, my son( A hard working lad whom I am very proud of) moved to the Central Coast a couple of months ago, time flies. He took this photo sunrise at Avoca beach not far from where he lives. Only 4 hrs from us. The cloud formation is magnificent, it looks like a huge bird. What do you think?

From our veranda our sky did try, not wanting to be completely out done. This one seemed to be thrown from the distant mountain tops. I’m thinking for this one a dragon lizard with its mouth open?

Now my peeps will know from my last blog, I’m in the process of redoing my kitchen. Whilst building I try keep all my tools central to where I need them, for family safety & convenience. I work hard at what I do & am trying to get the place to where we can just relax & things be functional & logical in terms of how we go about our day.

Well, she was a little disgusted & threatened to move out. She took her blanket & headed to the front door. You see, she likes to be close, where she can see me or someone in the family. Nearly completely deaf(clapping our hands is the only way to get her attention now) & her vision, I think everything is a bit of a blur?

She started out in her usual comfy morning place & she seemed content although, you see, the table under which she resides at times was central for all my tools & well central for a lot of bits & pieces really, during the kitchen rebuild. Photo was taken after she moved out.

I’m working away circular saw, grinder, drill & multipurpose cutting tool. I noticed movement out of the corner of my eye towards the front door.

Here she stopped worn out, a little disgusted, letting me know enough was enough. Poor little darlin.

Princess, had snuffed & pulled & pushed & dug her rug out from under what I can only imagine to her was a mountain that eventually would collapse & our little Princess was having nought of it, really.

Such a sad old little old Dame of our selection. The “woe is me” of it all. Princess stayed there for the remainder of the day. I must say knowing she was just laying there looking at me like that did make it a little hard to relax during the rebuild. when does it all end? Actually that kind of sounds like the whole family. I smile tentatively as I type. lol

Finished soon I promise!

I was a little excited at hearing the chorus from the chooks the other morning. I had to buy eggs for the first time in ages. Extremely hot humid days they have shade. I think they would be happier with an in ground swimming pool & floaties, anyhow. I try buy “free range” which by definition by Aussie standards means no more than 10,000 birds per hectare. Anyway I wont get started on the ridiculousness of these requirements. I reluctantly paid. Every so often I have scrambled eggs on home made grain bread for brekky or brunch 2 meals a day does me fine. Well I think I will search a bit harder for a local with backyard hens as check this out.

Store bought, paler than a cowboys knees in boardies.

Home grown a beautiful sunny sight on your plate.

The girls must have listened to my lecture about what we were having to eat & the living arrangements of those hens less fortunate than them. 2 days after I bought the eggs, I collected 9 from our girls. I did hesitate in giving the store bought eggs to the dogs. ugh…

As for the youngins that hatched a while back, it’s too hot humid & drenching wet to grow much at the moment. I put protection over what is surviving. Mum cut off some fodder pea foliage, fantastic soil nitrogen fixer, I threw this around the dome patch. Made a temporary little house & put the youngins to work.

I figure by the time we get some mild clear weather the youngins can graduate to the big pen growing my layer flock from 13 to 19 then eventually add 2 new chicks not long hatched & 3 on the way. Ever growing family fun.

May the adventures of your days be sunny side up

Sunset yesterday view from the paddock. WOW

Too Aussie really.

Goodness me I’m gonna find some eggs this morning, you should hear the chooks, it’s hilarious, I love it, they announce everything.

One of my dearest friends sent me home with a jar of her, oh my crickey, it’s delicious passionfruit butter. Amazing bestie of mine is a jam & pickle winner at our local show every year. This time it came with a little extra friend. Long story short , as I was getting into my car, I noticed this little darlin on the ground, it didn’t look well. My friend said “you have to take it or I wont sleep tonight” she is such a treasure. The things we do for our bestie, home the little birdy came & here we are the quintessential Aussie kitchen table d├ęcor.

No vets open, so I fed the little fella some Grevillea nectar popped into a box warm snug & dark. Alas it died through the night at least not cold & threatened. It’s just natures way these things happen & my bestie need worry no more.

1 week later & the passionfruit butter is nearly all gone, no apologize it’s just too yum.

There are a lot of these little darlings around our property at the moment,

so adorable & fantastic garden bug eaters, these precious little lizards will come out if I am weeding, they actually get quite close will turn their little heads & focus on me, we converse for a while about the weather, their family & the insects I disturb, we thank each other & go our separate ways.

Walter the dog growled a deep deep threatening growl & he grew 3 times his size, his hackles stood tall as he looked down from the back veranda. I hesitated to look as what on earth was it that got him so disturbed? It was this little adorable baby. I was in such a rush to get a photo of it I forgot to take one of Walter the giant dog. haha

Red Belly black snake, (I use the old meat trays in the greenhouse for seedlings, in case your wondering)which I tried to get rid of but it escaped me, I don’t mind them being around to keep mice/rat population down & they do tend to move away rather than attack if disturbed(we were always riding past them on the trails, even the horses never worried). But with all the family loving the garden as we do its safer if I can get rid of them when found. Now a carpet snake on the property would be perfect, please.

Who knew & this is why I am happy to see a snake on the property. Did you know a rat could rearrange your kitchen. Fair dinkum it’s true, I’ll prove it to ya. A few years back when I first built the kitchen I had an electrician hook up the wall oven, I had put chicken wire across the air vent at the top of the wall unit to prevent the rats from gettin in. Not realizing the electrician had made not one but 2 large holes in the wall to access the wiring, this extra hole being behind the wall unit I wasn’t aware.

Now I had put baits out from time to time, not for the electrician, for the rats, haha. There was the occasional odour as per usual when baiting. On this particular afternoon, I had just put a roast in the oven & went to lay down, resting my still recovering back. (hurt moving a large locker into my new shed)My daughter came in to tell me something didn’t smell right & I rose up carefully & woh…. I’m sorry but a roast is not meant to smell like that, that’s for sure. Roast out of the oven wait for the oven to cool turn off the power & the hunt begins. Where is the little flamin rat…mmm? Oh yes, so a wall oven by design did you know has a hole for a handle on either side of its frame not to make for easy carrying, its for the RATS TO ACCESS, it may as well have an exit & entry sign lit up for them. So folks here it is the after math, don’t panic I didn’t take a pic of the rat. This is gross enough.

After I took the outer frame off, finding we are so fortunate that the house hadn’t burnt down, we have a safety switch but looking at this damage, wow right.

I was not ready to do the kitchen yet. I had been drawing up plans for some time. According to the intruder I was ready. My back not so bad but feeling the twinge, alas the show must go on, so far this is how far. This Thursday the new oven gets hooked up. This one has no rat access, very very important manufacturing detail to look out for. Lesson learnt.

I will be moving the plate rack & putting pretty brackets up to hold it & all the bits & pieces. I just can’t wait I’m so excited. Can you guess how big the oven unit is? It has a gas stove top & electric fan oven. Not sure what I will cook up first, 3 loaves of bread & 3 cakes passionfruit cordial, jam & syrup, all at once just cause I can. To share with friends of course, I am beyond excited. And all thanks to the dear departed rat.

My Daughter took this photo from my car whilst we were heading into town, you can just make out the reflection of another 2 rainbows above it.

May your life be ever full of rainbows(Gods Promises) no matter what rats come your way.