Sunday, July 15, 2018

Fun Week and A New Car

The past week with our eldest daughter here, has turned into a whirlwind of outings, two lots of coffee, one with mum, one by the beach,
 
Cutlery and Table Number

One large and one small please



Then there were 2 movie outings, Ant and The Wasp and Incredibles 2, and 2 dinners the Indian one for my birthday and then a Mexican one. A visit to the Dr. for a biopsy and 5 stitches, and my hospital infusion. Then last night I hosted dinner for 12 gathering all the family that is here. I make them dress up in their best clothes, which makes it fun, especially for the kids who put on their frilly dresses, young 5 year old Master J had braces, and a tie so cute, it  matched dad who added a hat,  his twin had pink glitter dress and a little fur jacket. Worth all the hassle of cooking for 12, to see us all dressed up.

Dinner for 12

We had lamb roast and all the trimmings followed by a Rocky Road Cheesecake.

Rocky Road Cheesecake was delicious

Between all of this I have managed to sort out the driveway pumpkins, of which tonight Pumpkin Soup, with freshly baked bread rolls,  is one simple meal after a busy week. Oh and left over wine yeah !!!!

Jap Pumpkins

Last of all picked up my new car Subaru XV auto, 3 days ago. Having driven shift gears for 45 years, auto is proving a little tricky I have to double think it. It is also press button start, no keys as long as they are in the car,usually my bag. Then the brake is just a lift up or push down button. So advanced and slightly bigger than my Mazda 2. This I gave to my 16year old grandaughter who is yet to get her L's but her mum loves it as it beats driving the 7 seater van they need, just to go shopping.

 


So what a week, hope your week  was just as exciting.

Till next time.









Sunday, July 8, 2018

It's my Birthday

It was my birthday yesterday 7th day of the 7th Month. Not only another year older but it also represents this blog another year older. Three years in all. It is not the most popular but I enjoy telling my story, and hope that those reading it also enjoy what one woman does in her everyday life. My family don't all read it but those that do keep up to date and maybe someone tracing their genealogy will also find me.

 Statistic wise it is not brilliant compared to the popular ones which would probably have my 3 years rolled into a month or less but 15,328 page views gives me a thrill. Audience is world wide probably by accident in some cases, and this is my 165 post. I am proud of what I have achieved.

The Homemakers Forum I help moderate, had many birthday wishes from the friends there, and it is nice to be appreciated.

As for my birthday morning it started with breakfast in bed, followed by me  planting 300 seeds in root trainers and in the afternoon my lovely daughter in law with family and our eldest son in tow bought over a Red Velvet cake, the first I have actually tasted and it was delicious.


My present of 2 scarves and a lovely watering can filled with hand made wooden roses. It is gorgeous, and smells beautiful with Rose oil.


I had set the table with my lace cloth and the Harrods T -Set and spoilt the children drinking Hot Chocolate and Chai out of fancy cups and saucers and eating cake with a fork.  I think I enjoyed more watching them, than they did doing it. 

Yum Yum

 Our eldest daughter drove from Sydney that day for her holidays, and we all went to an Indian Restaurant. The meal was wonderful and on the way home bought 4 different flavoured icecream what fun tried them all. 

Quoting our daughter "Everyone has to have a Floating Birthday Balloon."

The youngest daughter and Husband in America, sent me a Bunnings voucher. What a great ending to the day.

It has been a busy week, cleaned out my garden shed, moved things around and giving lots of pots to the Community, trying just to use 3 or 4 different sizes. Time to get  ready for the Spring.

Till next time, stay safe everyone.


Sunday, July 1, 2018

To Prune in June

The saying "Prune in June is Way to Soon" I heard  from ABC Gardening Australia Tino Carnevale recently. I suppose being in Tasmania and in the middle of Winter he is right, but not sure if it relates to this sub tropical area as the nectarine tree has already flowered. It could be the hot weather. I hope so as I haven't pruned it yet. What I did manage this  last June week though is to prune the Plum, Lime and Lemon tree out the back and the Elderberry in the front. 

Lime LHS and Lemon

I had been waiting for the limes and lemons to be pickable and with the frosty cold weather we have had at night they finally turned yellow and so I picked everything except one bunch of lemons still green that was way up high. The rest of the tree though also had a good pruning.

Lemon to the back lime in front
 
What hasn't been done is a Lemonade Lemon Tree absolutely loaded to the hilt, and the Peachcot, Nectarine and of course the Mulberry needs a tidy up. I did prune the tall growing branches off of it as they were at least 1 1/2 metres into the air back  in May.

Basket of Limes

What a job the Plum was, made up of two species grafted on to each other. A Blood Plum and a Yellow one. John had to cut one branch with the chainsaw as it had died back completely, then I went over the long branches and after that cut each branch back to a ruler length at the most. I do look for where new branches or fruit will spring from and hopefully it will survive its haircut and produce some fruit this year. 

Plum Tree after the pruning.

Elderberry Before

Elderberry After

The Elderberry was very straggly, I didn't realise that it also suckers and I am hovering on getting rid of it although the white flowers are very nice. We haven't collected any to make champagne and the birds eat all the tiny berries, which are not worth turning into jam.

A Friend visiting, they watch for all the flying insects.
 
My order of bare rooted roses arrived and they have all been planted out in pots , 4 in all. I really love my roses any excuse to plant one. We bought some new big black pots for $7 which I will put the potatoes in so that left last years terracotta ones that had the potatoes free. So what do you plant in huge pots Roses of course!

Pink T Rose I have one out the front which I didn't realise but it is always nice.

To the Left of this Rose is the new one.



The roses are   Brindabella Rose Pink Bouquet, Double Delight, Queen Elizabeth my favorite pink one, and Daybreaker. The Daybreaker is out the front in a pot. Now that these have beenl planted my next job is to start pruning the roses already planted., also fed and sprayed.

 The twigs left from all this tree pruning I cut up and put into a large box to use on the fire next year. I have done this every year now and so handy.

Bonus Elderberry Flowers

There is still a lot of cleaning up to go, and more pruning. The very back around the pond is a nightmare so overgrown. All the work being done at the Community Garden is eating into my time at home, and I am beginning to notice a lot not done now. Today it is pouring rain and we had our monthly meeting, but I will tell you all about that another day.

Till next time.

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Winter Solstice Festival

The Winter Solstice Festival was held yesterday, at the area around the hall opposite the Community Garden. This year we joined in with a stall of our own. A nice change not to have to cart stuff to a local market.



We had 2nd hand books, plants,seeds, birdhouses, and cakes I made last minute, and charging a gold coin donation for a tour of the garden.

Some Tour guides waiting.
 The tours were popular and about 25 families went through. One group was from 2AirFM gardening show and we now have another interview lined up sometime.


We managed to complete the archway on the Friday which looks fantastic. John and the boys put it up and I and another painted the writing which John engraved into the wood.

Men at work.



                                        

Our New Welcome Sign

 It didn't  start till 1.30pm and the evening light came quickly so apologies for dark photos. There was a Scottish marching band, and Scottish dancers.

Getting it all together

 A  jumping castle opposite and down from us was very popular with the kids.


 Behind the hall were some stalls and the medieval group had set up 3, full of wares and were wandering around in costume. A couple of food stalls and a plant stall.


 The rural fire truck came, and giving little kids a go of the hose all afternoon, just in front and down from us, enough so we didn't get wet,  and at 4.30pm they took the hose into the garden and we got a free watering.





Once night settled more people arrived, a drumming group played, games organized  and a bonfire was lit at the end. We didn't stay that late, the time we left was 6ish as very tired by then, just long  enough to pick up a sausage sandwich for dinner.

Fire Brigade lit and watched it. We collected the ash next day for the garden.

Today at the garden only 4 of us turned up. The plant stall had left plants for us to collect and it just about filled the polytunnel. All home grown from cuttings, and will do our next bank garden very nicely, and of course collecting all the ash and left over wood, which we will use for our little fire at home. A nice morning tea as well from all the left over cakes.

Hopefully we will  have some new members, from all this and we are now $134 richer.

 Till next time.



Sunday, June 17, 2018

Mum My Greatest Challenge.

Thursday afternoons my sister and I  visit mum. As I have mentioned before Mum has Alzeimers, occasionally she remembers who we are and I think this week was good. We take her out of the dementia ward and go to the front to have coffee in the garden there.

Outdoor Seating Area off the tiniest coffee shop

There is no conversation with us, Jan and I chat away, occasionally ask her questions for a nod or too as an answer, but even then not sure if she understands. Sad thing is the same group of ladies that have lived there and a gentlemen that we have got to know, are all declining at the same rate.It has been 2 years and 8 months now, and all want to go out the doors when we do.


Front Entrance Path, wanders right to another entrance.

Gardens are kept beautifully.

The nurses and carers have to let us out but always in tow are two or more escapees. So it is a trick to get through once the automatic key is swiped, especially trying with mum and a walker at the same time.


Mum June 2018

Mum and Jan Dec 2017

The latest has been no teeth in. We have never ever seen our mother like that till a few months ago she refuses to put them in. I personally think her mouth is getting smaller with age and they hurt. She doesn't like using utensils so if we get a bite to eat, it is usually a  large Byron Bay biscuits that we break up in pieces. A two handle mug also for mum. Twice now I have had to get a nurse to help, once she couldn't get up out of the chair after Jan went back to work, this week she let go of the walker and wouldn't take it again. A very dangerous move so I held on and Jan raced to get help. The decline has been rapid in the last 6 months. She will wander off suddenly, lose interest or just forget where she is, but always you can find her trying to get out of the side gate.

Violas

The gardens there are particularly lovely. Once a resident used to keep it and it was full of flowers everywhere. She left  and it went into a bit of a recline but now there is an young man, who comes in every week. It is looking neat and tidy and I noticed more flowers going in as well. Mum used to love the garden but now its just somewhere to endlessly walk around. She prefers getting outside away from everyone.


We are still jogging along with our own garden. The big decision with it is what to do with the paths so having looked at some rubber back false grass this is the way we are going. Our next step is to get the crusher dust first which will be on weed mat, then the grass on that. Drainage across the path   is also to be done, to stop the flood at the entrance itself.

Drain needed here.

It has been a busy week lots of different things going on, usually the garden, will catch up next time

Stay safe everyone.




Sunday, June 10, 2018

Boomerangs and Bush Tucker

Another project has now been completed for the Community Gardens. All Rotarians this year according to the International Rotarian President, were asked to each plant a tree.

 Our local group contacted us and donated $250 of which we decided that a Native and Bush Tucker garden was in order. On the concept plan there is a designated area for it, but as that area has natural bush and also part of a road, I decided to design an area down by the fruit orchard.

You can see the orchard to the left.

 I hovered on matching the citrus area, but then came up with an idea of a boomerang, which is what we did. Two in fact and a circle in the middle.  The circle is going to be changed into a turtle by placing a smaller circle for the head the legs, I suppose just straight but  small angled beds from the body. As it has rained heavily after the planting day, we are waiting for the ground to dry out.

All at work

This particular area holds all the water, and in future we will have to sort out a drainage system, most likely a swale of some sort

Planting a Lemon Myrtle Tree

Morning Tea was served, and I took a nice tablecloth and some paper plates but the wind was so rough that in the it was packed up, and served cake out of the boxes, not that the men really noticed lol.

Jan folding it all up. 

Trees Planted were Lemon Myrtle, 2 NSW  Davidson plums and a rare and endangered Qld one, a Sandpaper Fig, Finger Lime, Walking Stick Palm, 2 Macadamia Nut, and a Qld. Bush Nut, 2 blue flax that have edible blue berries, and some Qld elk horn I happened to pull from my garden. Not bad for a start.

Deciding where to put everything.

When funds are available we will also plant some Australian flowering natives as these were used for nectar, and maybe a Banksia as they look good. John has taken particular interest in this garden, and been reading up on all different trees we could use. 

The rain flooded the area, and although we raised the beds with 5 cubic metres of compost, it needs a bit more work done. 

Our Native Australian /Bush tucker Garden all set to grow. 

Thanks goes to the Local Rotarians. Well Done

Following this event several days later the Mayor made a very quick visit, to see where the pavillion is going, John applied for a grant for this although we have put a deposit down for a  6m x 6m Gabelled Roof Double Carport,  and we are hoping that is a good sign. All other grants have been a letter to say we didn't get it. 

Fingers are crossed.

 Till next time.