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

Friday, December 31, 2010

New Years 2011

When the mid-nite bell rings tonight...
Let it signify new and better things for you,
let it signify a realisation of all things you wish for,
Let it signify a year of courage and believes,
Wishing you a very...very...very prosperious 2011

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas 2010 ...

We're on the last legs of year 2010, and today is a very special day in our calenders. One to get together and celebrate the birth of Jesus. Lets not forget what this day is really all about. Enjoy the closeness of having your families around you, enjoy having a wonderful meal together.

May I take this opportunity to wish you all

Until nexttime

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Food Dehydrator ....

Yesterday we stopped off at Factory Seconds and had a look at the food dehydrators. There was just one model to choose from, a Sunbeam and that was good enough for me, and not to expensive. So now I am a very happy girl. No more not knowing what to do with the fresh produce, nice giving your friends fresh produce but what is the point of growing food and giving it away all the time, and then not preserving it. Preserving in bottles has never really been my thing although I have done some in the past.

I have prepared some veggies, carrots, onion, sweet potato (kumera) and tomatoes quartered. It's still going atm so can't show you the end result. Next I try some herbs. At least I will really be able to do the onions now.

Friday, December 17, 2010

We got hail the size of golf balls ...

Somehow my veggie garden is in tact, only a little leaf damage from the golf sized balls of hail. I had visions of sweet corn pelted to the ground and the new beans which should start bearing soon in shreds but lucky non of that happened here. Could 't get home fast enough to see the damage.

I had only the day before picked the first corn off and steamed it ready with a knob of butter Oh so tasty.

We decided to stay at home, when we had taken the day off from work today and head up to the farm, with more supplies. Tomorrow (Friday)looks to be a lovely day, Saturday onwards rain is forecast again. We're not sure of our holiday plans yet. I would like to spend some time at the property.

My job today is to get those lovely dwarf bananas out of that big pot (infront of the climbing beans)and replant them into individual pots. There are two dwarf varieties in there Draka which has a red skinned and Cavendish. There's bond to be more work so I'd better get of

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Todays harvest and update ...

Todays harvest ... not bad what ya think. The beetroot is cooked and bottled already, got 2 bottles full. Golden nuggest, gem squash, cucumbers and motr zucchinni.

Ginger looking after the chickens, she lost her Fred last year and had to make do with Clyde the silky. Yeah his's the daddy of this little one.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Daisy and the chooks ...

This was yesterday's treat, a few corn chips from the packet, Harry and the Matildas thought they could join in too. And NO Daisy is not pregnant, why does everyone keep asking that question lol.

See George's fancy ski boot and the new jeans that had to be cut up the inside leg. I only cut 2 pairs of jeans, one his farm jeans and the new ones. That boot has little valves you blow up and release. So it protects the wound on the outside of his foot. It has been nearly 6 months worth of absese, just glad we finally getting there.

Yesterday we had our first snake we aware of for the season. It was a Red Belly Black and it was in amongst the pumpkins. Out came the weed eater real fast, I promise you. Jellybean was extremely jumpy last week, just a cable or cord and she jumped 6 foot high.

That's it for tonight
see ya

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Rhonda's Bread and Butter Cucumbers.

Can't let these lovely cucumbers go to waste so I remembered seeing a recipe for Bread and Butter Cucumbers over a Rhonda's blog "Down To Earth" They so easy to make I promise you. So pleased with the results.

5 medium cucumbers cut into 5 mm slices

350g onions, sliced very thinly

green capsicum and red chilli are optional

50g salt

350 ml cider or white wine winegar vinegar

350g sugar

2 level tablespoons mustard seed

2 level tablespoons celery seed
½ level teaspoon turmeric
¼ level teaspoon cayenne pepper

Slice the cucumbers, onions, capsicums and chilli and place in a bowl, and salt and let stand for 3 hours. Drain, rinse under the cold tap and drain thoroughly. Bring the remaining ingredients to the boil in a stainless steel saucepan and then add the vegetables. Reduce the heat, bring just to the simmer and cook 2 minutes. Pour hot into sterilized jars, making sure the liquid covers the cucumbers and seal.

And here is the finished product. Three jars of cucumber pickles for the fridge.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Tool sale and other news ...

Hey old George did surprise me today, can you believe he serviced the ride on, replaced the oil filter, fuel filter, changed the oil, just needs to replace the air filter he never noted which one he needed so did not buy one. He dropped the cutting deck, washed the whole thing, replaced the belt that jumped off and sharpened the blades. Bugger me dead, I haven't seen him do this much work for a long time, oh he even gave the mower a test run.

He was such a good boy that he had to be rewarded so we went down to the tool sale in Penrith and looked for a new battery for his 18v drilling machine. Lasttime we looked they cost $141-00 each and he just could not get it over his heart to pay that for a battery. Well they were marked down to $99-00 and he was so excited when I said he could have 2 batteries. There must be a motive from my side don't you think, could have something to do with building over the holidays. Tomorrow he plans on helping build a shed which will be turned into a stor room and maybe just tidy the carport up a little. I think it's going to rain tomorrow and he'll be sitting in his lazyboy watching cricket lol.

Once again I have a small list of stuff needed over the holidays, 3 tins of paint for the fence, screws for the building work (done I got 2000 for @220 bargain)20 bags of mushroom compost (done bought direct from the mushroom man) Pick up pink carpet from Mark's place for Rose Cottage, he just wants it gone asap, nothing wrong with it "just pink"
Fill up all the jerrycans and ride on before we leave for a week or two hoidays after Christmas.
I am sure to think of a few otherthings before then.

I have pickles to make tomorrow so I be back with a pic to wet your tastebuds
Have a great weekend

Friday, December 3, 2010

Questions and answers ...

Cindy from AJ oaks asked when the chooks will be ready for slaughter?
They should weigh about 5 to 6 pounds dressed at 8 weeks, according to Annie Roosters will be a little bigger than the hens,Lots of information over at Annies blog. I helped dunk in boiling water and pluk one rooster and Des chopped the head off and cleaned the insides while I was looking how it's done. Nexttime George will have to chop the heads off a few at a time. If he's to chicken I go get Charlie to help me but then I got to give a few away.So far it's not to much work.

Chris To answer your question ... Meat chooks are for the pot, just like the chooks you get at the shop. You buy the chicks, feed them chick starter for 8 weeks, they grow so fast cause all they do is eat drink and sleep. don't move a lot either I am told and are not good egg layers. They grow so fast their bones are a little brittle and could break easy. (just been told all this and then he wished me good luck, that could mean a few things in my book lol)
Comparing my normal egg laying chooks, their chickens are also raised on the same chick starter but do not grow as rapidly as these chicks. I beleive the meat chooks have been modified to grow that much faster, they eat as much in 8 weeks as the normal chooks would in 6 months.Don't think the hormones are in the food I may be wrongabout all this.
If anyone knows please comment. This is an experiment to see if I can raise them successfully and then into the freezer with them.

Carina I am hoping I am going to be able to slaughter them chooks. Are you offering some help for the day Lol

WendyB it is you I need to send you a pressie still, are you settled yet? You must be exhausted from the trip and then the unpacking.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Meat Chooks are doing great ...

They getting big so fast, just look at them, can you see the difference. I sure did not beleive the man at the hatchery, that all they do is eat, drink and sleep. Oh add catch flies and run around flapping their little wings, trying to escape the crate. It's getting a little small for them so we're going to have to do something about that this weekend coming.

Wow thats a lot of little chookies.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Garden Update ...

Any bees would love to pollinate these beautiful pumpkin flowers. These two golden nuggets hiding behind the flowers.

Stuffed zucinnis tomorrow and cherry tomatoes for our salad tonight. We having a ltlle trouble with a little fly szapping the roma tomatoes, so I did it "Tomatoe Dust" I don't like poisons and try not use any if possible. It's not that my garden is totally organic but I do try.

These are Lebanese Zucchinis, last year I grew a few monsters which we cut in half lenghwise and stuffed with mince and cheese and baked in the oven. It's just about a meal by itself. very yummy. I gave 3 to our landlord and I got 4 for tomorrow. And there's heaps more to pick.

another squash

Gem Squash Des you do have green fingers, this I took specially to show you, the seeds are still good. I going to save these seeds for next year. Hope there is going to be heaps of them, then I post you a gemmie too.

Cucumbers They doing great too, I will have to make some pickles with them.

And look at those heads of Sweet corn, Mate they just starting to fill out, soon we be eating fresh corn with butter. Nothing like fresh corn Mate.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Mining Disaster in NZ ...

The church bells rang 29 times so we knew it was final and the end of the line. Now 29 miners are at heavens gate with coal silt dirty faces asking is it 2 late? When god replies with half a grin no my children come on in. They place their mining lights gently on heavens floor when ......god said "job well done" leave ......your boots at the door. Repost in memory of the 29 miners that died at Pike River Mine.

My candle is lighted, my heart heavy. We held such great hope for recovery and now, we pray for the souls and the families of the 29 miners lost forever, may they rest in peace and the families find strength. God bless you all.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Meat Chookies ...

I finally did it got myself 24 little yellow meat chooks, the man at the hatchery gave me an extra 4 for good luck. They are chirping happily inside a big wooden crate with saw dust on the floor, a water dispenser hanging just out of reach to stop them making to much of a mess with the saw dust. A flower pot saucer and a little clip on food holder full of chick starter. They having a great time doing what little chookies normally do.

This is my first time raising meat chooks, thats not counting my other chooks where mum chooks do all the work for me. But then I still think babies raised by their mums are way more social chooks. The hens are starting to lay eggs again and soon I can start selling eggs again, dropped the price to $3.50 and have one regular customer.

More later

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Russian's have landed (spam) and the Pink Panther on the prowl.

Ok let me explain, I been blog hopping and noticed there are a few 'Russian' Men signing in as followers, they never comment as far as I know, but what the hell do they want. You got 3 Krissy go look! see them ... I have had 5 over the last few months and everytime there's a new follower I go check out who they are and if I don't like what I see then I just block them. Am I being nasty or just over sensitive, it's my life I sharing with you, and trust me it is very ordinary and sometimes rather boring. .

In no3's case He seems to follow single women and no theme, what is he interested in, has'ent even got a blogNow I do have a crazy idea just maybe he is a stalker after your money or your body or maybe he is a journalist/writer stealing our pics and articles for publication in Russia or where ever. So what ya think late and I better be getting to bed night and see ya soon

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Weekend ....

Saturday, we had lunch at the Salty Dog at Coolongolook, a small villiage on the Princess Highway, normally we just drive straight past eager to reach our destination. It does't look like much from the street front but go around the back and you would be pleasantly supprised. Do you do it too, check out what other people have ordered as the waiter walks past. Theirs looked better than what you ordered, we had fish and chip yummy.

Loved the way the sunlight came through the coloured glass.

Rusty tricycle againt the corrogated fence

Rusty corrogate ducks hang above the fire place.

View from the back garden. On the left is the wood recycle furniture shop. here's a quick peep ...

From there we travel down the highway to, here you can hire boat houses and cruise the river for the weekend. Would love to do just that and cast a line over the edge maybe caught some dinner...

I love this pic Don't you think it would make a great zigsaw puzzle. Did you spot the water dragon?

Well that's it for yesterday and now just a quick pic of our delicious Bunny Chows we had for lunch. Thanks Nick and Adele nice to catch up again.

Amy asked what's inside the hollowed out bread, it's a beef curry. Prefer a boneless indian curry with lots of gravy and a little sambals on the side. We had grated carrot,diced tomatoes,onion cut up red chillies with a little vinegar and oil as a dressing. It is just a little hard to buy unsliced bread here so you have to go to the bread shops for a whole loaf. or you could use hard crust rolls and hollow them out. But most of you bake your own bread so it not a problem for you.

Our last lamb born for this year ... and update

And it a boy, Well done Miss lashes and Nelson He a big boy with all the right markings except for the light colour behind the ears. He must have been born after 5 this morning that's when I checked on them. The blond one would have feed them at about 9 am and that's when she called to tell me the good news. Now we need to name him and I going to ask you all for some strong boys names, you wanna play with .... leave a comment with a name and why you chose that name.

This weekend is going to be rather busy, tomorrow Nelson heads off to his new home. We will load him early and drive to Moorland where Terry the juiceman and his ewes will be waiting. I'll take a pic of his girls then you can see what I mean by a real good gened flock of sheep.(Done) I am hoping for 2 ewes in exchange for Nelson for either Rowan or the new ram. Think Rowan is better quality and has nicer marking. It's really to soon to tell. That is going to take the whole day tomorrow. Terry has some cavendish banana suckers for me as promised.

Update: The move went rather well. Nelson announched his arrival with a big Bhur and the girls responded, his top lip lifted to smell them from afar. But first he had to deal with that bunch of wethers that think they king of this mountain. Thats them in the pic above. He was challenge by the biggest wether and did not backdown one bit, just kept coming like a steam train. They circled a few time before the wether change into reverse gear. Well done Nelson, just don't think it's over yet. Nelson then went to meet his ladies .......

And Sonday we invited for a bunny chow lunch. That's an South African Indian meal. Let me tell you it is just the nicest lunch and our host Nick really makes a nice hot curry, served in a 1/4 loaf of bread. A whole piece per serve, filled with curry and tomato and onion sambals on the side, the hollowed out bit of bread is for dunking in the gravy, Yummmmy. Suppose I need to bake them a Banana loaf or something to take with.

I so want to get some Christmas craft done this next week, been stalking all the craft blogs lately and now I got the craft bug again. Seeing I am going to have a little time on my hands for a while. Won't go into it at this stage but promise to tell you all in another post. No I wish I had won the Lotto!
I plan on making a few fabric snow men and finishing some UFO's Oh and something for a give away.

I meet Nick on the internet before he arrived in Australia and offered him accommodation for a few weeks before his wife and two kiddies followed him here. Just a roof and a meal and now we good friends. You can read all about it at my other blog Pay it Forward post. That reminds me Wendy is still waiting for her suprise gift, sorry I total forgot, Please let me have your new addy in Melbourne.
Have a great weekend

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A lots going on in the garden ...

Some purple Basil, it's so pretty
Baby chilli plants are coming up by the dozen from seed I scattered in a container, they need to be potted up into smaller containers. Clean forgot about the cucumbers,parsley, dill, mexican garlic, spinash, carrots, beetroot and strawberries just to mention a few. The climbing beans have just popped their heads out of the soil so nexttime I take a pic of them and the rasberry cane I planted last year.

Lots and lots of cherry tomatoes for our salad, and they so sweet yum.

These are Roma tomatoes, they the size of a large egg and great for making sauces.

A healthy crop of beafsteak tomatoes. I am sure chaffed about the tomatoes, never had a crop bear so well. It hailed the night before so I got belted and very wet covering the patch with shade cloth saving these babies.

Could have planted more sweet corn but it's not to late for another round I think.

White button squash

Queensland Blue?

Sure hope this is a gem squash!!!

Think this could be a golden nugget?

Des planted a varity of pumpkin/squash/gems seeds so it really a guessing game at this stage. I worked some extra mushroom compost and some spent hay, into which I sowed some sunflower seeds and Milo. Have you seen milo seeds before, yes you have it in your chook food little round orange seeds the size of a coloured pin head. Anyway it grows about 3 foot high, looks like a bunch of corn plants together but with skinny leaves. Dried out you only need to run your hands over the seeds to harvest them.