31 January 2012

It's okay. You're forgiven

This was the note left on the whiteboard by Husband because he ran out of time to tidy up the kitchen before he left for work. ♥

27 January 2012

The Big Wet

We have had another bout of wet weather, this time culminating in four days of nearly continual rain. The catchments were receiving this liquid bounty, and our major river which snakes its way through the township is swollen with water.

A break in the rain meant we were able to participate in the local tradition of going to check the river and it's height.

25 January 2012

Chicken Expansion

Since I wrote last about what had been happening with our chickens, we have had another loss. Sadly, Esme the Oppressor became quite ill very quickly. Husband and I both knew where she was headed, as we had just dealt with her sister Flower's illness and demise. We decided that the best thing for her was to spare her from the slow and painful downhill run, so my husband gently "dispatched" her.

It made us both so uneasy. We knew it was the right thing to do but it still sat uncomfortably within us.

The two left were reasonably well, apart from Bertha who has had a cold. Both were promptly sent to the vet who suggested a boost in vitamins for the girls. We have seen a steady gain in their health since then and we are all very relieved.

Our flock of four had now dwindled to two and one of them, Attila, had become broody. She spent her days sitting on the eggs in the nesting box, much to the frustration of Bertha who desperately needed to release her egg. We waited to see if this was just a passing phase in Attila and in the mean time, we discussed introducing some more chickens.

Discussions were completed with Husband and Imp soon driving over the border to purchase some seven week old chicks from a breeder. I had suggested that he only get two. They came home with three.

We now have two double laced Barnevelders and a New Hampshire, who are all growing at such a rapid speed that we are amazed at their development.

20 January 2012

Cold Day Baking

Summertime here has been an exceptionally odd season. Instead of the waited upon heat and bright sunlight, we have had cold days peppered with rain. To pull us out of rain filled funk and to heat our house, there is only one thing to day - Mama bakes.

This is not my recipe. It came from my midwife's daughter and it is a fantastic cake. Mouthwatering, lipsmacking fantastic.

Tessa's Carrot Cake

1 cup of SR flour
1 tsp bicarb
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1.5 tsp ground ginger
3/4 - 1 cup of brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup pecans or walnuts (optional)
2 eggs
2 cups grated carrot

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Grease a loaf pan (14 x 25cm - small size)

Start off by sifting the dry ingredients

Add the wet ingredients and mix well.

Add carrot and nuts and stir through. 
Pour into loaf tin and bake for 45 - 60 minutes until springs back in the middle

Add a favourite icing/topping or leave as is.

16 January 2012

Thrifty Finds

A lovely melamine plate and a pottery platter. Grand total: $3.

11 January 2012

In search of the village

Glass artwork by Barbra Benson Keith

What happens when you feel the type of village you want is currently non-existent? What do you do if the only way to feel connected to your current potential village is to change who you are as a person and how you parent your children? Would you stay?

This is the dilemma I am facing at the moment. The sense of community, which I so desperately crave for my children, does not seem to be here. We were very fortunate to connect with a beautiful family who introduced us to a different way of life, of parenting; of living! My blinkers were well and truly removed through them and my gratefulness is overwhelming.

When they moved forwards onto a new journey, I was left forever changed by knowing them. My eyes viewed my life around from a different angle. My ears took notice of how other people spoke to one another and especially to their children.

I have come to realise that we just do not fit in here anymore. We have changed. Just when I thought we were set into a particular pattern and way of life, I feel us transforming. Some of us faster than others, but we are all on a path.

Do we leave our old path to start a new one? If we continue on our current route, I fear that we would have to change our authentic selves to fit in. To shift our ethos to align with what is more expected around many parts of the area doesn't seem like a healthy idea to me. Where will a new path lead us? I do not know; but what I do know is that the life surrounding us here does not fit us anymore.

I think every family needs a community around them and I really believe this is something that the majority of us have lost touch with. I yearn for Womens Circles, people with the same parenting and educational ideals as we do, children who I want to see my children spend time with and learn good habits from.

Maybe its time to build our circle.

4 January 2012

Bloggers are liars

There is a saying that one should always "put their best foot forward". That we show the world the best of us all the time. However, this can also be full of pitfalls.

"How on earth do they do it?"

"Makes me feel I am doing something wrong when I look at these blogs"

"Where are the stories of them having a shit day?"

"You never see the photos of when it all goes to hell in a handbasket"

"This is false advertising. Makes it look all lovely but makes the rest of look and feel like failures"

"Oh my god! Her floors are spotless!"

We all have days that makes the vodka in the back of the cupboard look enticing. Yes, honestly, we do. If you take a look over at my archive and look at the months in 2011, you will see there is only two posts in June and  July. That is forever known as  "the months when it all went to shit". I didn't have enough energy left to anything else but breathe in and out, let alone blog!.

Anyway, I was determined  to find some blogs of people who have children, who homeschool, who unschool, some who have chosen schooling outside the home and say that its not all as rosy as people like to perceive it to be.







I could trawl the net a bit more but my smalls are glued to the TV watching ABC kids, screaming at me for a drink and I have put them off for the past three minutes so I can finish this post.  If anyone else wants to link up with some more, then please add it in the comments below.

1 January 2012

The Christmas Wrap up - on New Years Day

Not one to be on time for most things, I have finally gotten around to a) doing a blog revamp and b) writing about our time spent over Christmas.

Husband and I are trying to create our own family traditions surrounding Christmas that does not revolve around a jolly man in a red suit. We have made a conscience decision to not do the Santa gig for a number of reasons. It has been followed with us quietly questioning if we were doing the right thing. 

Last year, we were very strict in the way we celebrated this time in the season and both us of deep down did not feel so comfortable with it. We felt a little "Grinchy", so we have moved in a babystep like fashion to introduce some more creative things for all to do and to develop some form of a built up to the actual day.

Husband really wanted The Littles to have stockings. His eyes lit up at the prospect of it. On Christmas morning, there were three stockings waiting to be plundered. Full of goodies, some handmade, some just little dinky junky things, some delectably treaty - like chocolate.

He is a smart man, my husband. While the children were busy diving nose first into their stockings, us two tired adults could slowly savour a cup of hot tea and slowly pace ourselves so we could enjoy the entire day, instead of the paper ripping frenzy being over in ten minutes.

It was a great day. All were spoilt in their own way and took the time to take pleasure in our gifts while nibbling on home made shortbread and fruit mince pies. It culminated in a fantastic roast dinner cooked with such love and dedication by our chef, as the name states in gold glitter on his hat, Husband.

I hope all had a fantastic Christmas and my wishes to all for a wondrous 2012.