Devastated…

I know its not the best title & there are farmers everywhere having to put down their precious stock due to the drought. Any loss on the farm has an impact & a flow on effect. You can tell I’m kind of rambling trying to avoid the subject. Well here goes. In my last post remember

IMG_20191011_095831

They all loved me. We now have 1 black fluffy(aunty), 2 white speckled(Aunties), the white hen at the front & that’s it. The pen is surrounded with 2 layers of chicken wire, that is partly laid on the ground with heavy logs on top. Sure I had the bird predator piles of sticks but even that didn’t save them. Here goes…. A fox got nearly all them, quiet stealth like this thing had ripped a log in 2 & a hole through both layers of wire in the early hours of the morning to do its damage. Yes even Albert & Victoria our new duck & drake are gone, our silky roosters Simon, Denise & Ginger. I cant speak of it anymore its too much.

I must admit I shed a tear buying eggs yesterday, & I cannot bring myself to deal with it all just yet. How ironic that just days earlier I took a photo of them all like that, at least I have that & I will get more its just who I am.

On a brighter note we still have our frizzle rooster Gunther & his frizzle girl Prissy. They were in a little chook house in the house yard. Today is reinforce the pen day as if we do sell I would be devastated if the next family had the same loss.

To finish off here are some stunning Mosses that are surviving the drought in one of my many berm piles under the Eucalypt trees.

IMG_20191012_114532mkIMG_20191012_114546IMG_20191012_114413miIMG_20191012_114425IMG_20191012_114528 Always takes my imagination to little woodland characters with dainty wings & kind faces that make the world we live in so much fun, natures distraction at its best.

Black cockatoos flew over again yesterday so more rain on the way. yay…

Hide – n – seek

I just love all our menagerie so much fun to hang with & now they are in their new open pen area, if we were staying here this would be the goat pen (our property is still on the market) so for now as I’m tidying up they have full run & their loving it.

Its brekky time & they all come running.

IMG_20191011_095831

Even Albert  drake & Vicky duck have stuck around which I must say is a relief. Its always nice to know your pets actually do like you.

IMG_20191011_095834

IMG_20191011_095945

Its not for a chooky bon fire night, its a chooky predator shelter, they can get in amongst it & predator birds cant get them,  it works great as the area is quite open I have built 2 for them so they can hide no matter where they are.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_20191012_103743Can you spot it, it was SOOO high up & the reason why the chookys have their hidey places.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_20191012_192712

I kind of wish this one had flown a bit lower. We often get the falcons flying low, this one was huge not very often we get eagles magnificent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A live mound

I was cleaning up the north side of the property & just before it started to rain there were little flying insects everywhere, a little freaky at first then I found where they were coming from. A termite mound was overflowing so some of them were flying off to find a new nest. If I had my mattock with me I would have busted it & tossed it to the chooks but when I looked up at the pen the chooks were running around madly as the mites must have made there way over the pen so the were having a jump & run it was hilarious to watch as from where I was standing I couldn’t actually see what they were chasing so they just looked nuts…. as did I standing out on our property on my own laughing. hahaha

In case you wondered what an active mound looked like

IMG_20191012_113431

Every ones moving out. haha

IMG_20191012_113442.jpg

img_20191012_113442.jpgLook at the size of the creepy nippers, they do sting, well its not really a sting its more a tiny needle pinch & our little dog Princess eats them(protein yum).

 

 

 

 

 

May your day or evening be filled with happy hens to frolic with whether it be in your backyard, a friends backyard or your dreams.

Cause they can!

yes-they-are.jpg

I know its not a good quality picture but see the horses Marlo on the left & Zina on the right  guess where they are can you guess I wasn’t impressed although I do understand. Horses spend the majority of their time grazing its what they do, what they need & we are in drought & have been for some time. SO MARLO is a big solid boy who can push through pain so you cannot just have electric fencing he needs 2 to 3 strands of wire on his fencing as well as electric tape to keep him in. I had them out in the big paddock to have a graze & at some point through the night they ran out of grazing. So Marlo walked into the strand of electric fencing, believe me the fencing has a good bite to it, he just walks & keeps walking till the tape snaps & then helps himself & whoever is with him to wherever he wants. He has never gotten tangled. This time it was THE MARKET GARDEN. Peas, beans, lettuce, beetroot, broccoli who knew? they don’t like cabbage or spinach or sweet potato oh & that’s eggplant that Zina is stripping within an inch of life, the onions were all pulled out of the ground & left. There’s a list of fodder for you horsey people out there just in case you were wondering. They didn’t even touch the actual fodder trees.  Laugh just laugh that’s all we can do.

A definite chill in the air which is a little odd for this time of year, I had to put an extra doona on the bed last night & the cats & dogs have taken to all sleeping on my bed again as they do when the weather is a little chill. Its Spring actually. There is a reason for this chill, as I sit typing this blog & glancing up at the garden out front. Everything is clean & settled a hint of green coats the land, the birds are quiet & there’s not much movement at all this hasn’t occurred for some months now not like this anyway. You see it all started a couple of days ago have I mentioned the black cockatoos.

promise 3                   promise 1

 

promise-2.jpgYour attention is caught not at first by their loud calling squeal or the rushing sound of the wind as their wings beat the air moving from one tree to the other,  its rather the vice like beaks stripping the timber off old trees to get bugs that burrow within the timber, this at times sounds like a tree slowly cracking & splitting as it is about to fall. The sound basically sends you running for clear space. These magnificent birds are our weather monitors if there is a flock of these birds around its going to rain. I haven’t seen this many Black Cockatoos in a very long time there must have been at least 15 or 20  surrounding the East side of the property. Hence the really bad photos using an old phone my son has lent me, as mine had a thorough clean in the washing machine another story for another time.

I am excited to show these next photos, the cockatoos were right.

rain-2.jpg

Best type of Haze.

rain1 (2)

Look at it, it poured really good soaking rain, it was only short lived but crucial. I think what some people don’t understand is that drought doesn’t always mean no rain at all drought can be extensive long period of dry with not enough rain to sustain produce or life, even with a down pour like this while it was really needed the ground sucked it up & left us completely dry again with the earth crunching under our feet within a couple of days. Last night though it poured again pretty much all night that good soaking rain again. The black cockatoos can be heard calling in the distance, please Lord Please we pray for more rain where ever its needed.

The eyes those sooky eyes. The latest look for our Walter its a new extreme expression. He siphons the attention out of whoever he can when ever he can.

newest look

 

newest-look-1.jpg                                              How can you not love that face.

 

 

 

Grab a cuppa, put ya feet up & rest.

I am sitting at the table in the room we like to call the library, its my morning coffee place, looking out the window at the smoke fog filled tree line, the sun is just hitting the tree tops reflecting a reddish hue on the white limbs of the gum trees that seem to stretch taller & taller everyday as if searching the sky for any sort of precipitation, there’s a intermittent twang as the morning gives your senses a little hope as the dew drips from the roof line of the house hitting the gutter reminding us there is still moisture out there. A large flock of black cockatoos screech its way over the tree tops announcing the promise of rains to come & the weather reports have announced the arrival of rainfall in next couple of days. I pray someone got it right, we tend to trust the wildlife, their weather announcements’ are pretty accurate.

As my thoughts come back inside the room, the library, though the sense at the moment is there is not much of the air of the intellectual literate scholaring going on in the room. Most now know we have our house on the market & everyday I pack another little piece of our soul. Its quite funny how on our selection, I think especially when there is a deep sense of connection with the land, not just the house, becomes so much a reflection of who you really are, our selection homes 4 of us, packing 4 personality types no small feat that’s not even including the whole menagerie. No we’re not having a garage sale as so many do, i’ve seen toy story i know the trauma the toys go through. A few things have gone to goodwill & one of  my besties. I have almost finished painting all the walls in the house & am almost up to tidying up the house yard. I can say I now know every muscle in my body, I don’t know the names of them all but we are getting acquainted. I haven’t ridin the horses in months & my joints & soul are feeling it.

I have no idea of where our next selection will be exactly although we have a rough idea. We are not worried as when the time is right our belief is that God has it all under control. Our selection will be just that, “Our selection”.

For now here’s a little snippet of life here on our selection at the moment & it’s still blooming great.

img_20190902_170907.jpgOur back garden is kept thriving from the shower & bath water.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_20190916_055715

Say  Good Morning Elouise!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_20190823_095327

 

One of four new arrivals.

 

 

 

 

 

img_20190822_160554.jpg

One of my best friends feeds the birds sorry for the picture quality it was blowing gale force winds but you can make out the glorious colours.

 

 

IMG_20190909_155843

Must remember to shut my bedroom door throughout the day as you can see he doesn’t even have the decency to lay on his blanket at the end of the bed when I am not in the room.

IMG_20190823_092333

Cant stay cranky with him too long. Having a chat with his new found friend Lewy the fly, they chatted for ages, kind of grossly cute. Scary guard dog.

Hope you all are happy & well, I’m going to have another coffee how about you.

 

 

 

You won’t believe it…

This blog will make you wonder what on earth is going on & I’m going to sound like a galah caught in dust storm…

Well you see we have, dare I type it? ok here goes we are selling up & moving!…. There I typed it its in black & white before our eyes.

I am still working our little patch of paradise & do appreciate all that it has been for us, (big sigh). I will still be sharing it with you after all the house has only just gone on the market but alas it is time for us to move on & I don’t know that even if the neighbourhood (or our health) was different would we still be here.  This wasn’t a plan rather a thunder roll & lightening bang, it just struck & now we move.

We are praying that kindred people buy our home & continue to marvel at its treasures as we do.

We are looking at a tranquil area I’m not going to disclose too much but you know what is really funny another kindred wonderful blogger has moved & another treasured blogger has started following me & they have moved house as well.

I love the way for me God just throws things in my face (there has been a lot) in such a reassuring way every time I question is this right for us.

Oh here’s some more news probably more important than the last lot of news….

We’ve had a bit of rain not a lot but enough to wash the dust off everything & keep the plants alive, there is a little more expected.

1-16.jpg

So much much much work to do packing & tidying 14yrs of life here cant wait for the next adventure I so do look forward to sharing the journey.

 

 

 

Humphrey sort of….

Ok so I’ve hit over drive, sometimes you just have to stop I usually try have a day of rest at least one day a week, (the Bible is full of fantastic common sense life lessons).

I tried to copy & upload the Humphrey page for this week but alas I have had trouble coordinating anything & have decided to just give you a simple idea from one of the many pages that is Humphrey.

20190725_082036 Mum wanted to have a browse in our secondhand shops & of course I was more than willing happy & able to oblige after all it is our favourite thing.

Besides a few things Mum found i grabbed these sun visas, paid 50c for the lot. Had the string at home. Simple really just put holes in the corner of the material tie string off making lengths as even as possible & wella.

I had already dried everything on the bottom 3 shelves, I wanted to see how it balanced. I cant put too much on as the weight makes the shelves fold (I could crisscross some wire for extra strength) but I only really have a small amount to dry at the moment any way, which I placed on the top shelf. Its fun experimenting.

Helps to get to the final product which will be a cupboard or old fridge, not sure of size yet covered with gauze & chicken wire (our rats chew through everything) & with gauze or these visas as shelving. Yes I could make the cupboard myself 4 frames screwed together there you go, I have enough major projects at the moment there is a limit to what I have time to do. (haha apparently)

20190726_084412.jpgYears ago I had already made a couple like this using picture frames & gauze, frames from the second hand shops.

I like to try different things out, as if I cant use it for one thing there may be another use for it & if not, clean it up & send back if I can.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is your latest project?  Whatever it is I hope your having fun….

 

Budget break throughs.

Pray for rain, please please please we did have a little which was so great,  but alas we are now on water restrictions & with the dam almost empty our poor ponies paddocks are looking very sad. Yes outside the fence line looks great & I was going to put the horses out there then council decided they would spray it all, not just the trees (which is all there supposed to get rid of as they are under the power lines), but also the grass & the Swanson pea which is a native & the horses love it. It is no good now & as you can see everything is drying out & dying off, such a dissappointment. I have tried talking to those in charge but I don’t get much of a response. If the guys spraying wear full protective gear including a mask then what are we all being exposed to. They do not understand our land & what we are trying to do anyway. Frustrating beyond belief. If we could put the horses out there or at least collect feed (which I have done in the past) they wouldn’t need to spray & it would give our horses almost 2 extra acres of feed. Well that’s my rant. Sorry to start with that. We just pray everyday for rain.

pray for rain.

My little old Danny boy eagerly trotting up ready for his mid morning feed. I love his winter wooly mammoth coat & then in summer we have Danny coat EVERYWHERE for weeks haha.

One thing I do love about our town & out lying areas are our markets. I’m not sure why it has only been really the last 2 years that our markets have grown.  We can now work our shop days & budget around our markets. Which we are so fortunate to have. Our shopping was done fortnightly usually at our local supermarket, with our fortnightly shop doubling in less than a year & that’s without meat, $300+ a fortnight to feed a family of 4 eating healthy was becoming out of our reach.

Our markets have improved exponentially we decided to try our fruit & veg shopping at our river side markets $20 bought 2 weeks worth of fruit & vegies & $60 at our local butchers (remembering our little land is in drought)for meat & for the few condiments & necessities from our supermarket was still around $60. We don’t have exact amounts but $150 or there abouts was all we spent on 2 weeks worth of shopping to feed our family of 4 that’s $75 a week. Next fortnight should be less as we had to spend a little to save a lot in the long run. I’ll let you know.

20190721_110548

With the extra money we had left over we were able to & with a little extra help from Mum, purchase a bread maker. Watching our favourite Sunday show Landline they had a program about an Australian flour company, PERFECT, our local supermarket stocks it.

It meant that this fortnight we had enough money for extras to improve our selection. The next big market was an hrs drive from home,  with new found enthusiasm I headed off.

Arriving at lunch time I found a carpark easily & off I went. This market is set in one of my favourite areas. The town of my ancestors, Bellingen, rolling hills, beautiful mountain scenery if I was able to pull over & take photos I would have, maybe next time…. I took my time as PTSD does not do well in crowds at all, it was a little overwhelming (I am country) & I  had to constantly slow my thoughts down to concentrate. I was hugely disappointed with the fruit & veg side of things & thank goodness for my sanity I found 2 stalls that are regularly at our Kempsey markets. lol.

20190722_065451.jpg

 

 

I purchased myself a gorgeous little apron with pockets for when I’m gardening & collecting eggs.

 

 

Then I found one of our best native plant suppliers, $3:50 each for start ups & everything we have brought from them in the past has grown beautifully, there’s a tip if your buying from a new supplier ask around first or buy 1 or 2 things see how they go, before you commit. Well I went a little nuts, 11 natives & they are beautiful.

Market fun

From left to right: Native Olive, Sandpaper Fig, Green bottlebrush, Yellow Banksia, Brush Cherry, Weeping Lilly Pilly, Native Olive, Sandpaper Fig, Black Sheoak, Magenta Cherry, Black Sheoak. Yes I did buy 2 of a couple of the varieties, as well, I don’t know why, it was fun to be able to & there pretty.

I am yet to decide where to plant but if they can help block out the neighbours dogs barking & provide food for friends & our animals & us that will be great.

The bag in the background was made by an elderly man using plastic packing strips that you see around boxes sometimes. Its a great size can be hosed out washed & will last ages, its soft to handle & saves adding to our landfill. I’m actually hoping to buy more & use them as washing baskets.

20190721_110741.jpgSee it fits a great load of washing & was quite easy to carry to the clothes line & sat up well in the washing trolley & its pretty too. I have to get more & support a dweller of my ancestral land.

 

 

 

 

 

Back to  fruit & veg, no need to panic there is a fruit market on the way into Bellingen. I stopped there on my way home & bought some amazing beautiful fruit & veg locally grown. 2 – 3  weeks worth under $40 there is actually a whole bag of mandarines & pears & lemonades. What seeds I can save as it is all organically grown I will save & yes it will take a long time to fruit but the idea of purchasing like this is to be able to now & one day pay it forward.

20190721_110104

I am contentedly exhausted & knowing my family is eating well is always a great comfort. As our garden grows & improves there will be less need to buy so much, but that doesn’t mean I wont buy more…..

On an equally wonderful note my fantastic boy bought me a gift from our tender centre. I did shed a tear. Sorry the photos aren’t great.

20190718_163140.jpgPizza oven. The front has the perfect size opening for a pizza & its adorable little chimney & quaint little metal stand. It has taken  huge thought process away about building a pizza oven. The transformation of Little Italy is getting closer & closer to fruition. It is kind of tucked under the barby for now I don’t want it getting damaged in any way.

20190718_163149.jpg

 

Wow that was a lot, i hope i didnt verbose you out, but was so much joy to share.