18 December, 2008

Veggie Patch Update!

The veggie patch has been going really well considering I have been neglecting it with so many other things. The only problem I have at the moment is that some of the dreaded weeds are coming back and I need to get my hands on some more mulch. I seen some for sale in town for $4 a bale which is very good. So I might grab a few bales it will help the patch and give me time to get back in there and give it some tender loving care (TLC)
In my drums above I have planted potatoes and pumpkin (with a coulple of weeds) and they seem to be growing well. I have been reading various ways of growing potatoes and I thought I might experiment a few different ways, I'll have to post pictures of my experiment.
These are my zucchini plants with a bit of powdery mildew on the leaves, we have been having so much rain, anyway I thought I 'll make up a milk mixture which is suppose to help with that.
This is my peach tree that is wedge between the house and two water tanks. The fruit has been fantastic the last few years but I have noticed there is not as many this year. If we extend out here the tree will have to come down which will be a real shame.
I only have two yellow squash plants that survived out of a batch of ten. This is the first time I have grown them.....can you see the weeds lurking in the back ground.
These are my zucchini plants again, can you see there is about four zucchinis growing on one plant....yummy
This is my ti pi I made for my beans, they took a little while to get going but there now shooting for the sky. I also planted bush beans, they are on the left.
Can you see those weeds lurking around the beans
More potatoes here and there, I brought a 5kg bag of organic potatoes plus I had a bag of different varieties such as kipflers, pontiacs, delaware and royal blue.
These are my shallots, I bought from the supermarket and planted them in the ground and let them go to seed and they have been sprouting ever since. Beside them are leeks but we won't talk about them they are not looking very good.
These are my Roma tomatoes which I found really sweet and good for cooking. I need to get in there and tie them to the stakes, I job I will do in the holidays.
These are my snow peas and they are doing really well, the black thing in the background is an old bean plant that was growing there last year. I told you I don't spend a lot of time in the patch and the time I'm in there its to either plant something or pull something out or maybe throw some mulch around and of course grab something for dinner.
This is my corn looking lovely and lush, I was told by a friend who was told by a very old neighbor in these parts that boxing day is the day to plant corn for a bumper crop. So I guess I'll be out here on boxing day planting corn :)

This is my hassle free spinach which just grows and grows and I make the most yummiest spinach pie from.

Oh yeah this is one of the pest that is eating my grape vine at the moment and I keep picking, shaking, flicking them off which helps reduce there numbers thank goodness they have not done a lot of damage.

13 December, 2008

Renno Update!

Well we have been working all week trying to get what we can done, apart from our other 24/7 job of the shop where Dave makes the furniture and I run it, the house renovations have been coming along nicely. We plan to gyprock this room over the next month when we have the spare cash. The furniture has been put back where it will eventually stay with maybe a few alterations. The door will be made a little later for entry out to the laundry and back yard.
That picture on the wall is still on a slant and is driving me crazy I'll have to get up there and fix it. The room also looks crazy with the different colours and different wall linings. Eventually this will be gyprocked and painted. This house had small dark rooms and we have opened them up and it looks totally different, we are really happy the way the house is coming along. Its not everyones cup of tea to renovate in stages while they are living there, but we have done it before and found it managable. We have also built a beautiful project home as well, but I think I like renovating homes that have a bit of character and style. This house I would say is not the most interesting of houses but there are ways to make it interesting and functional.

Dave made the cavity for the fridge in the kitchen and he will put a cupboard on the top, thats where I like to store medication and other harmful things that need to be up high. We still haven't decided on what type of bench top we will have but we both like granite and we still haven't chosen what type of sink and tapes to have.
This is the cavity for my stove and range hood to go in, as you can see the bathroom vanity is still sitting there. When Dave rearranges the bathroom and does the plumbing he will move this vanity and put the stove there. We will be putting tiles in a brick pattern behind the stove and above the bench top, the floors I think will be a floating timber.

We still have heaps of time before Christmas to get the house back to normal if there is such thing as normal, anyway I'm happy and thankful for my family and what I have.

My cousin who is an Architects has come up for the weekend and will be meeting church elders to discuss plans for our new church. We are all very excited about the design and plan and what part Dave and I will contribute to this new church building.

04 December, 2008

Renno Update!

More walls have been pulled out and new ones going up, its all happening here on this little homestead. Below is our bathroom which was built on the corner of a verandah many years ago and its ceiling was low, the door has been moved and the ceiling will be a little higher. My kitchen is on the right of Dave and where he is standing a wall will be going up because that is where my stove will go and then my fridge. I know it looks like chaos but it will eventually come together, trust me!

This is my shower and hand basin exposed, thank goodness my daughter is away at the moment it makes showering time interesting. The wall will be up by tonight, so showering time will be a lot cleaner if you know what I mean (hehehe).
We are doing this on a really tight budget, I found it a good idea to check out prices and see if anyone can better that price and you will be surprised at the savings you can make. My days are pretty full at the moment with running the business, doing deliveries and running around timber yards getting timber and hardware for the renovations

I'm doing the rest of the house by decluttering which has been so invigorating plus moving out to storage containers boxes of items which belong to my kids that have long moved out. We did move from a huge five bedroom house to this little homestead and we had so much stuff that we have to be realistic and get rid of some of it and free up our living space.

03 December, 2008

Love the little children!

Today was the last day of my Scripture class, I have been teaching a composite class of year 4 and 5 all year. It takes a year to really get to know the kids and for them to get to know you and to really enjoy the short time of 40mins each week. But by the end of the year the kids love our time together, today we made friendship bracelets like the one below. The colored beads represent what God has done

Green- Creation: God made a beautiful world. It was perfect
Black- Sin: people turned away from God and went their own way. Their friendship with God was broken
Red- Jesus' death: because God loves us, he sent Jesus to die in our place
White- Forgiveness: God forgives us when we are sorry for not living his way. He makes us his friends again.
Blue- The Holy Spirit: Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to help his friends to live God's way.
Gold- Heaven: Jesus' friends will live forever with him. It will be perfect

The Little booklet is the Book of Luke and tells the The Real Story Of Christmas. During the year I had a reward chart and those who did anything that was kind or caring was given a star to go on the chart. They also had the chance to participate in our 'Fab Five', which they had to stand up in class and tell the class what there five favorite things are and they were under the heading of Favorite pet, favorite memory, fabulicious food, favorite place and favorite person and then they were given a star. The two with the most stars were give a prize and another ten were given this little booklet
We recapped what they had learnt through out the year and what they remembered. To finish off the class I gave them each a cupcake I had made them and they all gave me loud hip horays. Next week will be there end of year Christmas Assembly which the whole school participates and the scripture teachers organize bible readings, prayers and carols. This year has been interesting with so many things happening through out the year and now it is winding up with the festivities of Christmas and the start of holidays. I'm looking forward to another class next year for Scripture, some classes won't have Scripture because there are not enough people available to teach which is ashame because it is an opportunity to spread the Christian message in primary and infants schools.

01 December, 2008

I was in a Rut and Look what happened!

Have you ever had times when you were in a rut, whether you lacked drive, inspiration, motivation, enthusiasm or whatever and you sulked or moped around. Well I was in a rut, I wanted to do some miner changes to the house and spruce things up and do a bit of decluttering and every direction I went in things looked a bit bigger to accomplish than I thought. I lacked the drive and was a bit overwhelm with it all so I went to my hubby with a long look on my face and we looked over the situation (two heads are better than one) and started to make changes and alterations and set deadlines and before we new it we had over come Mount Everest :)

It makes life so much easier when you hubby is so handy and knocking out walls and rearranging rooms is a breeze. Our house is an old homestead and the people before us did not do much work on it . It has lovely high ceilings and timber floors, which do need a bit of work on. We took out two small side walls and opened up this room to make it twice the size, and the look is amazing. All of a sudden the clouds had moved away and the sun was coming out and I could see the potential for this room and it will not look so cluttered and dark and dingy
This was what my kitchen was like that little sink against the wall and the stove in a ridiculous covelet, you can see it in the picture below, the pink chair is in front of it. My new kitchen is getting built to the right and has a big window opening out.
My house is like a bomb has hit it but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel because it will be fantastic, did I tell you that my daughter is away for a week and we have a week to get this finished and the house back to some normality. We are going to throw up some gyprock, fill in some holes, it won't be completely finished like doing the joints, skirting and architraves and painting etc but it will be presentable and livable. There is a bigger picture here so we are doing this in stages.
My hubby just loves knocking down walls and making things happen, he is a builder/carpenter and he loves when a plan comes together.
The little dogs were not to sure about all the banging and rearranging of the house, some ran and hid under the beds till it was a bit quieter, the others were to busy eating their beef bones outside :)
This will be adventually be gyprocked and a door in the corner which will lead out to the laundry and a back deck
This is how the room sort of looks now, we will eventually gyprock the whole room, paint and polish floors and dress the room up. There is a support in the middle of the room until Dave gets in the roof and puts the beam up, it is all pretty secure so don't go worrying. We had a busy evening and will be working on the rest of the house through the week I'll let you know of the progress, I just hope my daughter doesn't see this or she will be freaking out :)
I have to mention when we were working on my daughters room about a year and a half ago Dave and I were standing on a plank (it was solid) on some scaffolding, because the ceiling was quiet high and we were putting up the cornice and the beam snapped in two and we both came crashing down and my (bare) foot went straight through the floor boards. I was in pain all night and went to the hospital the next day (of course it was a long weekend) and had it x-rayed and I had from the inside tore flesh from the bone and had a grazed shin bone :(

27 November, 2008

Beef and Rennovations

Well I picked up my beast yesterday from the butchers all 200kgs of him, thank goodness the butchers bagged and labeled the meat even though I had to put the meat into smaller portions. There was so much beef my three freezers are full, this meat will do our families for quiet a long time. It worked out with cartage, the kill, tax, levy, butchering the price per kilo was about $1.90 Aus, which is very good. Even the dogs are happy and their eyes lit up when I gave them a bone they could hardly carry. All five of them were gnawing on their bones while we were busily labeling and packing the freezer.
I was hoping to take more pictures but the memory card was full and didn't have time to unload pics. We must have had about 30kgs each of sausages and minced meat, and we bagged them into meal sizes.
The cattle were free ranged on our property where no chemicals have been used for about five years and the pastures have been lush and the meat such showed these qualities.

It was breath taking looking over all the cuts - topside, oyster blade, fillet, T-bone, round and chuck steak, corned silverside, pot roast, rolled roast, rump.

Halfway through our packing we had to stop and have this juicy T-Bone with chips and my oh my did we savor every mouthful, then back to the packing
When I came home with all this beef I came inside and found out that Dave and Jess have been demolishing the back section of the house where a huge cupboard was. Our plans were to pulls this cupboard down, move the toilet into the corner an make a door into the wall to access the bathroom. This will be a temporary plan because the bathroom will be moved to the other side of the house. We are still working on the kitchen and these modifications have to be done to accomplish this. The back half of the house will eventually be my laundry with a toilet and the back door which will open out onto a deck.

I must say they cleaned up their mess very well, until I went into the spare room and found a whole lot of stuff that I have to go through and pass on.

This is the laundry at the moment with the toilet on the left, all this will be pulled out and gyprocked , the toilet will be removed to the other corner, the new back door will be where the toilet is and there will be a timber bench and overhead cupboards

This is the remains of the huge cupboard that will be going to the tip

25 November, 2008

Thoughtful Information!

Don't ask me how but I surf around from information to information on the web and sometimes I find some interesting articles or web sites. I think I started out looking for information on rendering beef fat to get Lard, because we had a beast killed last week and there will be all this tallow and I was going to make soap with it. Some how I ended up on this web site called Granpappy
Anyway I was reading information about:-
  • Surviving Hard Times
  • Gardening Tips'
  • Recipes For Hard Times
  • Worldwide Food Shortage
  • Job opportunities during Hard Times
  • Emergency Evacuation List
And so much more. He had interesting information on the Great Depression and his thoughts about the recession we are all in now, I suppose some of the things could be to the extreme but things to think about.

I should be picking up our beef tomorrow so I will post pictures on how I go in labeling and freezing it, now back to my soap making information :)

24 November, 2008

Domestic Violence!

Domestic violence occurs when a family member, partner or ex-partner attempts to physically or psychologically dominate or harm the other. Domestic violence can be exhibited in many forms, including physical violence, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, intimidation, economic deprivation or threats of violence. Most of these incidents go unreported, well not today!

I was working today in my shop and I heard a commotion outside, a bit of yelling and swearing so I went out to see what was going on and saw a young lady about22 running and yelling and a man also yelling and swearing. The man kept walking and the young lady came running back past my shop she was frightened and crying, she ran across the road and ran back still agitated and shaking. I ask if she was all right and if I could help. She said she was afraid of this man she new who threated to run her over and was going to harm her again. Another lady with two children who were with her also seemed upset and were fearful that the fellow would return and harm her and them so I brought them into my shop and bolted the doors and rang the local police. I couldn't believe how calm I was and how accurate my details were of the situation and of the man ( learnt from experience to get as much information you can) anyway the police arrived, the young lady was still upset but had calmed down a little. This poor young lady was fearful of giving information about this man in case he becomes more violent against her and her fear was justifiable because he has harmed her before and I'm sure it will try again This man had her wallet with her bank cards and identity cards and she new he would take all her money. The police took her statement advise her about getting a AVO against this man and helped her with other problems in regards to ID and money. My heart went out to this young lady and the situation she was in, I could feel her fear, I said to her , which I know is easy said than done, to go
with the police and get all her belongings from the house she was living in with this man and get away from him and stay with one of her girlfriends until she can get the help she needs.

I looked on the internet and their are many sites that give information about Domestic Violence and give advice on preventing and protecting yourself and places you can go for help or advice which is excellent.

So this was the start to my Monday I hope the week gets better :)
We had so much rain and the weather was so windy and cold, a good day to stay home snuggled in bed with a book, not to happen. Yesterday Dave and I had dinner with friends to discuss the plans and construction of our new Baptist Church, I'll have to share this with you later :)

21 November, 2008

Tagged !

I have to write another post because I was just over at Children in the Corn
and I was reading her post called 6 Random things about herself and she listed 6 others to be Tagged for 6 Random things then I seen my Blog listed and well I just fell off my chair and thank goodness no one was in my shop at the time (confession I read blogs in business hours) So now I have to dig up 6 random things about myself :)D
  1. My husband and I lived in the same small town and went to the same small school and didn't know each other. We met each other years later through talking on the CB Radio and arranged to meet each other face to face, in radio terms it was called having an eyeball.
  2. I hate to have cold feet
  3. I asked for a horse every Christmas and every Christmas I would run outside and look for my horse :( I was 33 before I got my horse :)
  4. I love CAKE :)
  5. I do my best creative cooking when I don't have much to work with.
  6. I am an Optimist, my glass is always half full never half empty

NOW :) I'm going to Tag :

Sunny Corner Farm
Joyfull Home Maker
The Empty Nester
Laughing Orca Ranch
Our Simple Green House


Link to the person who tagged you.
Post the rules on your blog.
Write six random things about yourself.
Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them.
Let each person know they’ve been tagged and leave a comment on their blog.
Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

20 November, 2008

My Cup Runneth Over !

We have had 90mm of rain in the last 3 days, the rain was that hard last night we had water come in over the kitchen area where we are renovating, the gutters could not handle the amount of water that was coming down. We pulled out buckets and towel trying to stem the flow and catch as much as we can. The lightening was flashing and the thunder was cracking it was all happening. We could hear the creek behind us roaring with the fast flowing water.

We live about 50km out of town and we are on tank water so that amount of rain was a blessings because it filled up all of our tanks and the over flow was diverted to this plastic tank above which I use for the washing machine and for flushing the toilet. When we renovate this side of the house it will look a bit more tidier.
This is Sarabie curled up in her bean bag, it was a bit too much for her with all the thunder and lightning and the scurrying around with buckets and towels. The other dogs were curled up as well even our cat Kitty was curled up with one of the dogs.

We try to save as much water as we can, this is the bottom half of a water tank that was of not much use to someone so it was given to us and we have put it near the front verandah and it catches the water from the verandah roof.
This is my darling daughter weathering the rain to fill up our 25 litre drums that we usually fill up in town at one of the water mains to fill up the 1000 litre drum out the back for the washing machine/toilet water.
I was helping but having the cold rain run down my back and neck was too much for this little soldier to bear so I retrieved to the verandah.
After the rain had filled up the tanks and the plastic drum we filled up the two 40 gallon drums that are in my veggie garden, what a blessing :)
And to top all of this off we had a black out and had no power but never fail we dragged out our generator which has been so handy. We were able to make our porridge, boil the kettle, have a shower (we connected the generator to the water pump), blow waved my hair and watched a little TV.

This is the monster that has saved us a few times from starvation and boredom (hehehehe). The black out lasted for14 hours, Dave was unable to do any work in the shed but Jess and I went to work in town in the shop and fortunately there was power there.

Ezekiel 34v26 I will bless them and the places surrounding my hill.
I will send down showers in season; there will be
showers of blessing

Farewell "Buddy Surprise"

Farewell "Buddy Surprise"