The trouble with simple living is that, though it can be joyful, rich, and creative, it isn't simple. ~Doris Janzen Longacre

The best way to bring a sustainable change in the world around me is by bringing the change in myself

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Bunya Mountains

One of Queensland's National Parks, Bunya Mountains is one of the few places where Bunya Trees grow,tall giants of the Rain Forest. The roots, like wondering giant fingers of the huge old fig trees winding their way through the undergrowth, where ferns mosses and licken grow. Huge tree ferns growing in the canopy above. A short detour to the waterfall. And It's only 2/3 hrs drive from Brisbane. Have you been there?

A walk on the trails is great for the fit and not so fit(thats me) Lucky there are shorter routes so I can manage quite well. Being the camera person, it takes longer to catch up with the group.

We normally book a 3 bedroom self contained cabin for a few days, then invite the family to join us. The fire roars warming the cabin, while us girl see to dinner, and the little boys play in the bath, Grandpa takes it easy,It's still Rugby League season so quite likely the tv is on sport,leaving the big boys to chop up wood and keep the fire going. Outside on the lawn a group of wallabies graze peacefully. I am going to miss our short breaks there.

Photo's from our Trip to Cowra's Japanese Garden

Our little daytrip turned into a day full of suprises, the Gardens was one. Pina, my Japanese friend from work and I decided we must go and visit but we never seem to find time. Cowra is a 3hr trip away, Every season has a different face, Winter's are very cold there, so expecting it to be dry and very brown, it was quite charming with winter colours. Camillias and yellow jouquils every where. The first Magnolia buds are just starting to appear. Huge Koi swimming lazily in the pond, waiting to be feed. Our next trip is going to be in 3 weeks time when most of the magnolia buds should be out, then Pina and her family with go with us, taking a picnic basket with us. So we will keep you updated with more winter and spring colours.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Birth of a Lamb

Amazing to witness the birth of any animal, What a privilage. The first breath of air it takes gives you a thrill just to be there.

One of our ewes started lambing on Friday afternoon (forgot the mobile so DD couldn't call me) and another on Sat midnight. Just the one weekend we finally got to go to the farm, no rain, so yep we missed the births. But Sat evening's birth was a bonfire and milo with mashmellow, some toasted of course affair. The landlord who is also our neighbour, kids were all there. OH city folk

Wensday while cleaning the sheep shed out (the bedding hay really smelt bad)one ewe just would not go out, she had just started lambing. Rushed to finish limeing the floor and putting new bedding hay down. Got myself a milk crate and a flask of coffee, shoved the other girls out. All you could see were the little hooves sticking out, she was standing up then lying down, wimpering a little, throwing her head back you just saw her pearly white teeth, as a contraction took hold, pushing then resting . Finally a little nose started appearing, just as I thought I might need to help by pulling the legs, could this be a breeched birth? (should have paid more attention to DD who has done some vet nursing)

A few more pushes and the whole little body slipped out, mom started licking his face and nibbling away cleaning him up, shoving a little to get him to stand om wobbly legs only just to fall down again. Finally finding a little stronger legs to stand on. Still mom kept moving just out his reach for a tasty nipple, all the while talking to him, encouraging him to walk, finally he hit the jackpot and started suckling .......

All she needed was to get the placenta out........ Well that was my sign to leave them in peace and head back to finish washing the dishes.

PS I took photo's and will develop today, so keep checking the blog over the weekend. Missed you all but I been baby sitting.
(wonderful having daughters that know how to copy and paste, saving having to rewrite it all ... maybe someday I will work it out. Post by Chester taken from Twisted Sisters, a forum for SAfrican Expat Ladies...members by invitation only.

Update 21st July: count so far 3 ewes and 2 rams, and 1 more ewe to go, she seems much later than the other mums.

Monday, July 20, 2009

a Granddaughter's fairy blanket ........

Yeh Right, maybe someday I will have a granddaughter but in the meantime I have crocheted a blankie for her. (not much hope of that happening anytime soon) This blankie has magic yarn from the scrap box, all left over yarns weaved in ... with a few extras thrown in .... creating a fairy blanket.

I have gone with a ripple pattern, casting on just enough chains for a cot blanket,132/148/164 chains for your strips to run width wise or lenght wise. Yarns I have used are Flutter/Feathers with a matching 8 ply, 1 strand of 8 ply from Lincraft. And 2 strands of fashion yarn Peacock, which cost a $1 each from the Reject shop just make sure you buy enough of it the first time as you are using 2 strands. Rather buy to much yarn cause you can always make a beanie to match.

Pattern is as follows,using 1 strand of 8 ply, crochet/cast on required stitches/chains.
Turn to start first base row, use first 3chains as 1 treble st, crochet 7 sts =8 sts, make 2 chains, crochet next st into the last no 8 st, then cro.7 trebles,skip 2 chains, next treble into 3rd chain.... Continue with the last 16 sts to the end.
Change colour every few rows, it does look nicer if there is some sort of sequence to the colours but it's your choice entirely. Tie ends and work them in with a wool needle. You could crochet a simple border to finish it off.

Tip: I have seen blankets come unstuck because threads have been just cut off, all that work for nothing. Spend the time ... it's worth it.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Wise People's Quotes

This selection of Quotes come from the back of little sugar sackets, so I sure they won't mind me sharing it with you.

Your legacy should be that you made it better than it was when you got it.

Be the change you want to see in the world.
Mohatma Ghandi

Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with what there is.
Ernest Hemingway

Never accept failure, no matter how often it visits you. Keep on going. Never give up. Never.
Dr Michael Smurfit

You should always keep your word. All the setbacks in life come only because you don't keep your word.

Use no harmful deceit; think innocently amd justly and, if you speak, speak accordingly.
Benjamin Franklin

If you purpose to speak, always ask yourself - is it true, is it necessary, is it kind?...
Gaulama Buddha

It is better to suffer wrong than to do it, and happier to be sometimes cheated than not to trust.
Samuel Johnson

Treat people as if they were what they ought to be and you will help them become what they are capable of becoming.
Johann Wolfgang Von Geothe

Everything's a circle. We're each responsible for our own actions. It will come back.
Betty Laverdure

If you've only one breath left, use it to say thank you.
Pam Brown

Hope you found a quote or two you liked.
My father used to have a quote of the day in his office, and this just reminders me of a lovely man and great father he was to me. Love you Dad. Passed on Sept1999.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

My mosaic waterbowl from recycled stuff.

You find all sorts of wonderfully creative materials on Council clean ups. I just can't help myself I have to look. This bowl was a concrete bird bath sitting in someones yard until the pedestal broke and it found it's way on the clean up. Old ceramic flower pots, bases of lampshades and some old crockery are some of the creative finds. A new green majolica platter I had bought from a lady on Ebay arrived in bits & pieces but that turned into part of this lovely waterbowl.

2 boxes full of little glass tiles, some still on the sheets, they about 10mm square, also found their way to our house ..... to think what project to do with them. Leaning towards maybe a wonderful under the sea theme, on glass with lead for the grouting. Should look stunning! Somewhere I got some glass peddles ..... got to look.

Got very excited over a handmade pottery mexican urn, the base was broken so it went on the curb as well. I covered it with more blue and white ceramic bits and now lives happily as a water feature, nestled on river rocks between 2 ponds. Will take a photo next time we up at the property.

So next time there's a clean up, think creative and recycle stuff.

Monday, July 13, 2009

The lambs are here

Miss Lashes ....... are there twins in there?

This little one is 4 days old ... mom is brown and ram is a white suffolk.

Our first little girl, 9 days old, great jeans.

I have named her Bella meaning beautiful girl.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

A simplier lifestyle.... keeping the goal in sight

This is hard work, having one foot the the normal day to day lives we lead, working fulltime to pay the bills and rent. And the other wanting to "Treechange"and live a far more simplier lifestyle. Sometimes you lose track because it takes so long, thats when you got to remind yourself just how far you have come already. Good things come to those who wait and plan ahead "Baby steps" one step at a time and we will get there. Lessons and skills need to be learnt asap. otherwise you will just be setting yourself up for failure.
Treechange and living a simplier life might mean less income but don't be fooled not less work.Your day starts with a good cup of coffee, then your out feeding the animals their daily meal while your pot of oats is cooking away. George is Type2 diabetic and needs a good low GI start to his morning, more and more people are dianozed with diabetes today. Has it got anything to do with our lifestyles and processed food? White bread, fatty foods and stress? Has GM foods got anything to do with all the ailments, ok it provides food for the nation but has it been proved safe in the long run?
Do you have to move to the sticks to live a simplier life? the answer is no, you can do so much to improve your lifestyle and it's got nothing to do with a expensive plasma or going to the shopping centre everyday, it has to do with wanting the best for your family, their health and happiness. Good food that you grow yourself where possible, spending time together as a family and creating a loving home. Old fashioned values.