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

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Pics from the veggie patch

Going to be a good crop! I bought a punnet with 6 eggplants seedlings and planted them in a group, drove a few supports into the ground to prevent them from falling over. There heaps of purple flowers still opening. and 9 little fruits growing so far.

These purple king beans are going real well too, they planted in one of the 1/2 45 gallon drums. I planted another drum today.

I think this is suppose to be a butternut, only it's spreading a little?
Rosella growing in a tub with strawberries, it grows into a smallish bush then get beautiful flowers, they die off and then those red fruits below appear. Used to make jams and cordial.

I will just save the seeds this year cause our Miss Daisy eat most of the plant before I spotted her, there were just stalks left. It is recovering. The new fencing should keep her out of the veggie patch.

Daisy having a rest in the shade, Ginger scratching looking for something to eat.

Up close and personal. The vet re done her horns this week, looking good.
I worked in the patch today, filling up 1/2 45 gallen drums for raised beds with a mix of garden soil and mushroom compost from the landscaping place, adding a little cow manure to it as well. That should be fine for now. Nexttime add sheep compost to it. Planted silverbeet, chinese cabbage, sprouted potatoes, chives in a old cooking pot.
Dinner was a small leg of lamb, roast potatoes, rice and steamed veggies.
Until nexttime

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Stay put or move again?

That's the question!! Tanya has been busting our chops over this snake issue, her room (master bedroom with it own bathroom) has a door leading on to the veranda and the carport is right next door. It's packed with shelving and boxes, her stuff (fold up chairs and reception desk, filing cabinets) from when she had the dance studio, and my antique restoration stuff. Now that a perfect spot for mice and snakes to hang out. All my building materials, solar panels, veranda railings and bullnose corrogate sheets, that needs to go to the farm still. Then the hyrobath for the dogs.

Anyway she woun't let up!!

George has got sick of it and told us to find another house with a garage on acreage. That would be like finding hens teeth atm. So I think we will have to buy another container and have it delivered here instead. A lot less work than packing up. Our landlord is happy with that and will get his backhoe out this weekend and level a spot and put down a little crushed builders gravel for it to sit on. His's a top bloke. (Italian and rather cute too)

It house cleaning today, catching up on all those chores I been running away from. Windows being no1. So I better be going. see ya


Friday, March 26, 2010

And we got a winner .....

Ladies we got a winner! George did the honours and drew out the name for me.Now if only Romeo alias Smelly would do the honours and stop playing around. Here he is sporting his poodle leg from when he was on a drip.

And we got a winner Deb from "A clothesline out the back" Congratulations Deb.

Now I just need your address and it on it's way via Australia Post to your door.

To all the other ladies who celebrated with me, Thank You so much. Have a great weekend.

Tomorrow I pick a winner!

No I am not going to the races, there I'd lose my money for sure cause I know sweet nothing about horses, dogs or jumping frogs. I will draw a winner of my 100th post give away, a apron, book and a supprise is the gift. I had been sewing a little every night, and finally I am done. So tomorrow is the day.You better be quick if you want your name on that list.Trust me it the pic that is so bad, I need to get the instruction manual out and see why the pic sare coming out so badly. Can't blame the new glasses for it!

Daisy had a little run in with a sheep, busting her horn badly, so she went back to the unviversity Livestock Dept to have them seen to. They wormed her and trimmed her hooves too while she was sedated.

Has anyone been having problems with snakes? They very active this year around here. We have had 4 in 2 weeks, it really been a bad season this year. 2 baby and 1 large red belly black and a large brown, all to close for comfort.Have I told ya I don't like Snakes
See ya tomorrow

Monday, March 22, 2010

Stuffed Zucchini with a little left over mince.

Picked another one of those big zucchini's yesterday, a lot smaller in lenght but just as fat. We had Mexican chilli mince with those Stand'n Stuff Taco shells the ones with the flat bottoms, with the usual filling for dinner last night, rather yummy. A little mince was left over and I added some diced onion and grated tasty cheese and mixed that. Now following Pina's ( my Japanese friend) recipe ... first you slice it then hollow it like a canoe, fill it up with mince and top with cheese, bake in the oven. It's yummy.

So I did all that and it was yummy. These are a few nice zucchinis on the plants still, so now I need another recipe to try out.

This week has been dreadfull with the aminals. Our silver persian cat has been at the vet since friday, suspected poisoning Which means he must of ate something or his body is poisoning itself, they doing tests and are waiting on results, meantime his is on a drip. If his blood cells don't inprove by tomorrow afternoon, he will have a blood transfusion. Romeo (Smelly) is only 3 years old and has many more cat years ahead of him. Today he looked heaps better than Saturday morning when I popped in.

Daisy has broken a horn, ramming one of last years neutered rams, it was more a playing thing only her horn broke right at the base. Not sure what the livestock vet will do tomorrow. Both horns are a problem even after having her dehorned , having grown out deformed. I don't think I would leave it any longer than a week next time to have it done. Daisy was 2 1/2 weeks old when the vet did the processure.

We have also had 3 unwelcome visitors, 2 baby red belly black snakes and a 1 mtr brown snake. Lucky no one got bite. What an eventfull 2 weeks.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Time to Celebrate my 100th post

Is it possible to be posting my 100th post, must be, thats if my maths is correct. So let's celebrate with a apron give away. No picture yet cause it's not finished. I have dragged the sewing machine out for the second time in two weeks but then ended up having to run errands for the "Blond One" or get dragged around the shopping centre looking for sports bras.

And a book by one of my favorite writers Maeve Binchy ... The Copper Beech ... I just finished it and would love to pass it on. If you have read it already, then please tell me and I will find another book for you. There could also be another supprise in the bag but you will have to wait and see.

So who is going to leave a comment at the bottom of this post? Closing date will be 7 days from the date I posted this post
So hurry and add your name
Have a great day

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

We've begun to long for the pitter-patter of little feet - so we bought a dog. Well, it's cheaper, and you get more feet.
Rita Rudner

That's so cute don't you think.

. Some of you might be wondering how Chief the 10 yr old golden retriever is getting on, remember we found him on the community board. Yes he has finally settled in with the other dogs, still growls a little when the other dogs get to close at dinner time or when he's got a bone, which is normal. And he does not wander the streets of Mulgoa anymore. Chief is frightened of thunder so that could be one of his problems running away. And the fence was replaced with a more permanent one. In the beginning we were very concerned about him biting Tammy who had only just seettled in herself. She replaced her Mom Lacy Pants, that was her show name, her eyesight was failing and died of cancer last year.

Lacy Pants ... grandma to a lot of springer spaniels, winner of many titles including the Sydney Easter Show. She's now in Doggie Heaven.

One of the first photos taken of Tammy

Tammy (6)is the split image of her mother, both very gentle souls. Poor Tammy was badly mauled at a dog show by a stray and lost her nerve around other dogs, so was retired early and came to live with us. It took a lot of coaxing and love for her to trust us. At first Knight thought it was Lacy when we introducted them, going straight to clean her ear which he did daily.

Our other male dog Knight (6)was always top dog, grandson to Lacy, he is also the youngest dog, soon found himself growled off his throne, now has to settle for second spot. He's a lover not a fighter, prefers a play rather.
Now here is one very special dog, looks a bit like a walrus with his curly coat and top but it suits his personality. He was Lacy's helper, esp when she had just woken up from a doggie nap and needed to know where everybody was. Napping a lot nearer the end. She would bark until she saw him coming to fetch her, her hero.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Frogs serenading under the lamp post! They were given to me by two little girls that came visiting in the veggiepatch ... we planted strawberries and a few seedling. It was the baby chicks that stole the show. a punnet of iceberg lettuce waiting to be planted.

These plants are still full of baby lebanese zuchinnis , not sure what variety they are cause they grow huge. a tube of mini bananas that need seperating. Kumera sweet potatoes getting a little out of hand. A butternut vine with a heap of flowers and tiny baby butternuts growing. It's a mess but a lovely productive mess.

These turnips growing for greens for the animals and the occasional pot of soup. Banana chillies to the right, great for roasting. A lemonade tree in a pot for shade. Beetroot seedling coming up at the back. A punnet of eggplant grown into a large bush with heaps of purple flowers.

Meet Harry, looks fearsome but very nice rooster.

Daisy hiding from a few raindrops in the east wing. The dogkennel which is now a nesting box from the council clean up. Note 50% shade cloth covering the whole chookhouse giving shade in a very open spot. Temp. underneath is a lot cooler.
The veggie patch was getting a little cramped and with a mate giving us a heap of nice fencing, we decided to replace the old wire fence. DH had to dig a few new posts and we enlarge the patch a little, screwed the new fence panels on and put the shade cloth back up. It's there as a windbreak creating a nice micro climate inside the veggie patch. Next weekend we will add another large raised bed and truck in some ground and more mushroom compost. Daisy spend the day in her enclosure wondering what she did wrong.
Hope you enjoyed my little tour of the new improved patch.
Until nextime

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Buying local & fresh from the garden

Been thinking about my foodmiles lately, and with careful shopping I can improve. All these new terms, we never knew much about such things years ago did we! We just bought our foodstuff, never thinking where it came from. Ask most city kids where milk comes from ... corner store or supermarket. That is sad ...

Ask yourself these questions ...
Do you know where your food comes from, no not the supermarket but where it's grown. What chemicals or perservatives are used?

Are you happy eating GM foods (Genetically modified)? I read somewhere that in India you could be jailed for speaking/protesting about GM food, so they are forced to eat it or starve. Hope none of that is ever available in your supermarket.

Do you support Beef being imported into Australia, from countries that could have diseases such as mad cow or foot& mouth &&. Human blood is not accepted from anyone that was in England when they had the madcow decease. Our farmers here suffer under all our rules and regulations. From the minute the animals is born, all vaccinations etc needs to be recorded, they need tags with a number to regulate where it comes from and without all that it can't be sold at the sales yard for slaughter. Then the farmer is not the one making the money, no it's the middle man or the supermarket. All other countries need to do is apply to bring meat in but there is no prove of the above, cause not all countries have the same laws. Here we have the best beef! How will we known where the meat comes from when it's all neatly sliced and packed?

Are you buying eggs that are laid by caged birds or do you buy barn laid or free range eggs?

On the Back of tins or packets there should be a made in (your country) Australia. Check out the Homebrands ... I bought creamed corn from Thailand ... you wanna tell me we don't make creamed corn here.

These are all questions you need to ask yourself and lets be truthful one's budget does play a big role in our shopping trolley decisions. Cooking healthy meals from scratch instead of grabbing the frozen meal, that tastes like crap anyway.

Just up the road from us are a few farm stalls, stuff grown in their own fields. Freshly picked! One in particular sell Tomatoes and Honey, and a few in season's veggies. They just the best tasting tomatoes!
It's fig, prickly pears and strawberry season. Yummmy strawberries dipped in chocolate.

I love the firm plump cherries from U.S.A, dearer than our local cherries which are smaller. Never buy alot so no I will keep buying cherries from U.S.A, my one weakness.

Did you know farmers have had to rip out orange trees and bulldoze them, because there is no market for the oranges. What else can they do with them. But we import orange juice concentrate. Go figure! Seen that on ABC Landline (TV)

OK your head must be spinning from all this information. Protest to your Minister, send him a email. Why should we put up with it!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Summers offically over

Well the chook palace is done, the east wing now houses Matlilda and 7 chookies, varying in ages from 2 to 4 months. First thing they did was have a good scratch around then processed to have a dustbath. Lots of talking going on. The hens have been laying an average of 6 eggs a day, not that we eat so many eggs a day. Come the end of the week and the bowl is overflowing with eggs, the neighbours get a dozen just for putting up with Harry's crowing. He's a black orpington rooster. I meant to take a pic tonight but we got home so late it was to dark by the time I thought of it.

The silky roosters are not as loud, thank goodness. Clyde and his boy rooster, do have the occassional tiff, with a face off, puffing up those neck feathers ... eyeing each other and lift off ... like don't mess with my girls. I tried offering him free on farmstock but nobody wants roosters atm.

Daisy was ramming the sheep at her food bins this evening, she tried hard to fend them off ... then the game was on "run and bounce around the veggie patch all 10 sheep and 1 silly Daisy goat. Only Daisy gave one huge jump and landed inside the patch, bad enough she all ready eat the rosella plant that there's only stalks left. The only thing we can now do to protect the veggie patch is to lift the fence higher or get hot tape.

Talking about the veggie patch, I so nearly pulled the zucchinnis cause they looked a bit sickly, then they just took off and started flowering. No manual cross pollination here and look at what we picked over the weekend. Yesterday I picked a whopper measuring just on 15 inches long and weighed 2.475kgs on the parcel scale at work. I gave Pina one last week and today Kay got the big one. She promised to take photos, of the before and the yummy dish she is planning. Can't wait.
. Tonight we have a lovely veggie stirfry with lamb chops. It was rather yummy. It's late and we need to be up by 4.30 am so

Good Night to All