A journal of my favourite pastimes gardening, farming and sewing.

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

So this is Christmas

Christmas means different things to different people, and a couple of things stand out in my mind: good - the call of the storm bird and frogs on the verandah at night, not so good - missing those loved ones no longer with us.  You do the best you can in those circumstances and at last the Christmas spirit has started to filter into me.

Its been a couple of busy weeks.  We had a kill done (sorry if that offends anyone but that's just how it is here) - one beef and two sheep which resulted in 165kg of meat to be bagged, labeled, and frozen.  Our price per kg was $1.70 which is brilliant.  Our freezers are overflowing now.  I requested a lot of cuts be left on the bone so I'm looking forward to winter for osso buco, lamb shanks, ribs and other slow cooked meals.

Last week we had the electricians in to install ceiling fans in all our rooms and put in some additional power points. We've already been loving the fans with some quite hot days again this week.  I also had a couple of days in Brisbane and then a lovely visit with some friends in Toowoomba for coffee.

Yesterday was my last day of Christmas shopping, and I was surprised how uncrowded it was in Warwick thank goodness. As the onslaught of arrivals begins tomorrow I still have a heap of stuff to do today so hopefully it won't be too hot.

We had a plumbing emergency at our Boonah house - the tenant reported what she thought was a septic tank problem but in fact turned out to be an underground water leak.  Our Boonah plumber was able to go there first thing Monday and got it sorted but he couldn't understand why the tenant took so long to report it as it had been leaking for many months.  Looks like a big water bill heading our way - joy.

On the plus side our entertainment area is almost ready now.  The guttering is on, the lattice back in place, and I sewed up 90% shade cloth as shade blinds which make a huge difference against the afternoon sun. Peter is just in the process of installing the pulleys and ropes so we can raise and lower them as needed.  We'll put other fixed shade cloth over the latticed area to reduce wind and sun as well.

Our ride-on mower "carked it" last week so Peter will borrow a pushie from work so I can whizz around the area immediately around the house with it.  The further afield areas will have to wait until the required part comes in.  

The fridges and freezers are chocker and running full tilt; the menu is ready to go, the only components outstanding - prawns will be picked up Christmas Eve; drinks are coming via the kids; everyone is bring something, so dare I say it - I think we are ready.

So Noel my friends - have a happy, safe, blessed and delightful Christmas.  See you on the other side!

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Can't leave it alone

It was like this.

Now its like this.

And its not finished yet.  Still have to put back the lattice and I have to sew some shadecloth blinds.  However I have to say it is very cool there even in the middle of the day and it helps keep the house cooler as well.  There's something to be said for never being satisfied I suppose.

Cheers, Friends.  Barb.

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Stone Fruit Season

I was very fortunate today in that hubby was down Stanthorpe way and picked me up some second grade cherries for jamming.

When he brought them home I had a taste and the flavour and texture of them was anything but second grade.

Just look at those sweeties!  The idea was to make cherry jam, but I will now have to whistle while I process these to avoid the quantity whittling away to nothing.

Through hubby's work we will also get some plums again and I have asked one of his workmates to pick me up a carton of mixed stonefruit (nectarines, peaches and apricots) for $13 when he goes through Stanthorpe again tomorrow.

I feel fortunate to live so close to the Granite Belt that I can enjoy these gorgeous fruits in season at such a reasonable price.