...Homemade Rainbows...

Monday, December 27, 2010


I'm feeling this was the best Christmas in a long while
despite the persistent drenching from the heavens
and a few personal challenges prior
gifts of laughter
dear family
and a little decadence for the belly and soul
here's hoping your day was as blessed as mine

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Happy Solstice!
We're enjoying some merrymaking and preparations this week.
As well as celebrating the sun...
when it appears that is.
Happy celebrations and preparations to you too.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

the lunatic farmer

Saturday evening saw me lucky enough to be sitting dry beneath an enormous red tent in the middle of Northey Street City Farm listening to just my kind of lunatic.
The awesome Joel Salatin spoke of many things that made complete sense to me... and everyone else there....several hundred in fact.
Wow that man is blessed... with the best job in the world and the ability to speak. Inspiring and truthful....
even if his neighbours believe him to be a bio terrorist.
I think perhaps the term lunacy has been applied to the wrong people don't you?
Bless you Joel.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

war and peace

There's been a little war and peace here.
Work to be done, work being done, goodies to nibble fresh from the patch, baddies being nibbled by goodies fresh in the patch and little critter friends....
A balance of good and evil, hard work and rest...

even if enforced rest...

We've been struck with a nasty tummy bug.... literally one by one within hours we each succumbed to it's assault... in an almost comical matter really even to the point of being forced to share the same puke bowls at certain points (it's hard for any Mama to care for others in the throes of ill when her tummy is doing the exact same thing). Sorry for the detailed visual there but that's been the reality in our house this last week. Good news is we are all on the mend.

Before that though life was all about shifting the contents of those numerous yellow bags up there and digging out concrete and demolishing one rotten side fence... finally. Excitement mixed with dread at the changes about to take place in my beloved garden and just how much work is going to be involved.
I've given you a little sneak peak in there of what my mulched paths are going to look like...some of it I managed to complete before being forced back indoors to nurse the ills. Three and a half of those bags are gone.....
and I know the others are still there waiting.....and with more pavers due to arrive today....
life will again get back to being about those bags and our garden....

War on the bugs...
Peace in the garden...
or is that the other way around with all that heavy hard work waiting?

Peace in the garden it is!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

in between raindrops

in the garden is where we can be found lately
ambling in and out between rain showers
the raindrops are a good reminder for another cup of tea
to ponder our space
his creating
her creating (they are frogs by the way)
and Mama's creating
still shifting mountains of earth, slow but steady
it's all taking shape

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

to stay or to go

That top photo up there was taken just yesterday afternoon.
Don't be fooled by a nice fat bowl filled with produce though....take a closer look.
Sadly the girl and I had just plucked every single one of those fruitfly bitten peaches from our tree.
What a abundant crop that could have been....look at just how many that tree was bearing and I had already thinned the crop out!
I know there are always wins and losses in the gardening stakes.... and organic gardening especially is a fine art of observation, timing, wile, guile and some sacrifice.
Sacrifice I was aware of. I knew the fruifly were going to wage a pretty wild attack on these little fuzzies....I mean it is a peach tree...in Queensland!....in Spring!
And I had bagged as many fruit as I could and that I thought we would eat and cook.
But as all is fair in love and war those little blighters somehow managed to bite the fruit right through the bags ....so fare thee well peach babes before any more hatch out.
In addition to losing all these I also threw about half a dozen of my capsicums to the chickens.
Note to self.....bag everything....if that even helps. Sigh.

So the question stands.
Should the tree stay or should it just go?

I guess in any decision making process there are the pro's and con's.
And there are pro's of course.
Obviously it's a good bearer.
It performs such a pretty Winter show...and brings bees (of all kinds) to the garden.
I've been adoring our little native resident lady leafcutter for quite some time now. There she is above busily cutting those peach leaves and making nests for her babes in our bamboo.

But I guess in any productive garden...and from a sense of self sufficiency.... is it beneficial enough to be maintaining a tree, not particularly suited to this climate, for the blossoms and bugs?

Care to cast a vote?

Monday, November 15, 2010

birds and bits

With my permaculture garden taking shape in the backyard there was a need for the addition of a water element. Of course I had/have many plans for this but one we completed this weekend with the addition of a new bird (and bug!) bath.
We'd saved many parts of a tree we recently cut down (to make way for more and more practical growing space) to use around the place. How could we waste such an awesome resource? And the best bit we saved... the trunk crown...a place where Mia used to sometimes sit enjoying a birds eye view... has now made the base of our new bird bath. I dug (and dug!) it into the centre of what will soon be another large garden bed. I think it will keep all the birds that seem to be visiting us so much lately quite happy....

And for the bits... we have two new nature shelves, made from some garden hardwood.
This house seems to collect a crazy amount of oddities from the wild.
In every corner there seems to accumulate a myriad of rocks, stones, feathers, seeds, leaves, flowers, nests, bugs...dead bugs, live bugs, sticks, shells....you get the picture.
Secretly, or not so secretly, I love it....adore it.
So we made some shelves where we can let them collect together....so we can admire them all together, when we walk past or when we choose to curl up on the couch next to them reading from the book basket below or sit right there on the floor and sift through the treasures that have been collected.
I'm not kidding myself though... I have no doubt our goodies from nature will still accumulate in any other free (or not) space around here but it's still nice to have a relegated spot regardless right?

In other news...
the tooth fairy is sending us broke!
She's growing.

Monday, November 8, 2010

the whir

Can you hear it?
Me neither, but it's there... that whir.

I walked to work this weekend.
I worked two twelve hour shifts over both Saturday and Sunday and I walked to and from both.
With ipod in one ear and bird song in the other I blissed out for a full 25 minutes at a time with only myself, my footsteps and the freshness that is 6am.
I have to add I have fallen head over heals with these guys, hence the ipod, otherwise it would have been just me and the birds I tell you. Like I said..bliss... (and maybe a little side *training* for a January goal)...although as soon as my bike is on the road I shall be making the trip via pedal power.
But aside from my moments of quiet and solitude stepping it out rhythmically in between work the only glimpses of home these two days were of the shower and my pillow.
It made me realise how lucky I am that the whir of time really does have it's slow moments for me amidst the other business of my days. Do I really kid myself so often that I am that crazy busy?
I noticed this morning (amidst reorganising the chaos that is two days without Mama home) that the choko vine had reached the top of the chicken coop...really? In two days?
And the tomatoes are so fat... and so are the rosa bianca's (I can't wait for those grilled aubergines!).
The sugar cane setts have sprouted.
And could those banana's really be fatter too?
Noticing such changes after a couple of days without pottering and garden gazing really does show that I must find and spend quite some time doing just that in my days. A little indulgent for such a busy Mama? Or has that too become part of what my own business entails. Blessed me.

So maybe that's why I usually don't quite hear that whir.
Because I'm usually quite aside from it... taking that mindful time out to notice and watch amidst all my other doings.
I am however a little glad I got caught up in the whir for a weekend because sometimes it's that *carrying away* that gives us our reminder of what we have created at home...and just how different and separate our own whirs are....
and how very good that is.

Monday, November 1, 2010


Normally I guess like most Mama's I find myself helping the little ones with their pronunciation fairly often but in the case of skooky how can I just yet? Skooky is just so much darn cuter than spooky don't you think?
So it was skooky that was said numerous times yesterday as we celebrated our Halloween with treats from awesome inspiration via here...

and with some apple bobbing...

and our own witch's broomstick making. That was fun....from dried mulberry and lomandra prunings from the garden.

And after a trip out with friends to visit a real jack-o-lantern we lit our own candles at home for those no longer here but dear to our hearts who just may be that little bit closer in spirit on this special night...

and we bunked down in our pj's with pillows and blankets and teddies on the couch to follow in our other little tradition to watch our Halloween favourite... with just maybe a little chocolate to munch.

Happy All Hallows friends.
And happy longer... or shorter days wherever you may be.
I hope the ones you miss were closer by for a time.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

procrastination is not a bad thing

I finished a rag rug I've been wanting to make for the longest time!
And in the process I've figured out I'm a master of a couple of things.
I'm a master at coming up with new ideas and new projects or just simply adding them to my ever increasing list of things I want to do...
and I'm a master at never actually finishing too much because there is always something else or another new project to begin or dream about.
Do you see that cute fatty of a white and green crochet hook up there? I think I purchased that three years ago. Three years! I blamed procrastinating on this project on waiting for just the right group of sheets to show up at the thrift shop.
Well I think I'm going to reinforce that excuse right now because I'm kinda glad I did because this little rag rug is hopefully going to be kept by my girl for a long time for its sentimental value.
You see when I was procrastinating the other week on working on my latest study assignment I picked up that fat lonely unused hook, walked straight to the linen cupboard with an idea popping in my head and grabbed Mia's cot sheets, kindergarten sheets and her first bed spread and began cutting. It felt a little wrong but I continued on.
And there it is.
Completed I tell you...completed!
One rag rug crossed off my list and now living on her bedroom floor.
I found her the morning after I completed it, after sliding it quietly into her room while she slept, curled up with wild bed hair on the floor lying across it. I think she likes it!
And it goes quite nicely with her desk. Do you remember we started that thrifted project a little while ago too. It then sat for a while chair-less... waiting for just the right one that met Mama's approval.
And it popped up during our latest trip to Pottsville in the form of my and my siblings study chair from our childhoods. A lick of white paint and it's just right... don't you think?
It may take years in some cases but even after, and sometimes because of, a little procrastination things do get completed and turn out just right in the end.
That's what I'm telling myself anyway as I sit here blogging instead of working on that assignment and finishing the painting of all our trims and doors that I started yesterday ( and has been waiting for probably close to three years too!)..... sigh.
I think I might just wander down to Mia's room with my cup of tea first and admire her rug just one more time before I get back into it.

Monday, October 18, 2010

sugar and sunshine

It's been a while between drinks, friends.
My sweet sisters comments about not updating my blog in a while with some images and words for her to look at has found me motivated to be here again.
"I haven't even blogged in ages" I almost moaned to her last week after commenting on just how long it's been since I gave the house a good clean and nosed down into my studies properly. Exactly what have I been doing lately? Other than mothering, working, updating work training, pondering and setting some new goals for myself that is!
"Gee what's it been, almost two weeks?" I casually threw out there while we were out on a rare sister date on Friday night. (We went to see this by the way...)
"The 1st of October!" she ever so quickly replied.
The surprise must have registered on my face, so she explained her disappointment every time she clicked over here to see if I'd visited and the same date popped up in the post header.
Friday, October 1, 2010.
So it was.
Call it shaken, nudged or inspired...whatever...but here I am and that's a good thing. I've missed this space of mine... as have others it seems. Love.

Happenings around my world have been varied but mostly marred by rain. An enormous amount of rain! Gratefully received of course...the earth has been rightly soaked and the dams have been releasing water with warnings of floods along the river as a result. Quite the turnaround from when we were watching that same dam receding without a raindrop in sight not too long ago! How the worm turns and how mother nature loves to remind us who's in control. I love that.
But...I also do love the sunshine and the excitement that something we so take for granted can bring when it streams through the windows first thing in the morning after quite the long hiatus.
Thanks to the last two days of glorious sun I have made some serious progress in the redesign of the back garden and have even been planting (and nursing a little case of sunburn today...how silly...yes sunburn!) Oh yes and as quickly as a single area had been slightly finished, or in some cases half finished I found myself there on hands and knees sowing seeds and transplanting seedlings straight down into it!
My newly planted green babies include more papaya, roma tomatoes (now I know I can grow tomatoes!), pigeon pea, lettuce, coriander, basil, radish and a couple of things it's probably not the right time for like perennial leeks and broad beans...but ah I couldn't help myself. It's been so long.
I've also planted a choko vine on the chicken coop for fruit and shade as during our blitz out the back a few trees have now departed, and some sugar cane setts by the cubby which we acquired by the side of the road. Sweet sugar cane...planted not before a few sections were stripped and chewed of course.
We have also been joined by a raspberry bush and a loquat tree. Very exciting and very experimental...fingers crossed!

So amidst the mothering, working, training, pondering and goal setting, there have indeed been other things afoot. Between the rain, the sun, the digging and planting there has also been quite a bit of mulberry hunting and eating; bonding with a new *Charlotte* (we love our garden creatures here) and a new craft project for this Mama.
I guess the fact the house hasn't been cleaned in so long is not such a bad thing.
I'll take the sugar and sunshine over that any day.