Forget the Ides of March, we have the Daffodils of September

Hi All

“Daffodils are like ideas, they spring up in the middle of waste land and they give you hope for future possibilities”

That quote is a narf7 original. It sprung out of the ether in my overstuffed brain one day when I was walking Earl and noticed a pile of rubble in the native bushland on the side of the road with a daffodil flowering profusely in the middle. Life is a bit like builders rubble sometimes. We make our “buildings” and we might not always build them strong. Many times they fall down and we are left with our own piles of “builders rubble” that need to be sifted through to salvage what we can from the experience and to start again but there is always a daffodil in every pile of rubble, we just have to sift through and find it.

The dogs have gone mad...they appear to be begging for cauliflower! "NO It's MINE!"

The dogs have gone mad…they appear to be begging for cauliflower! “NO It’s MINE!”

White men might not be able to jump but 50 year old white girls can certainly head-bang with the best of them

White men might not be able to jump but 50 year old white girls can certainly head-bang with the best of them

Earl is VERY impressed with my ability to rock

Earl is VERY impressed with my ability to rock

The son-and-heir just managed to pull an almost extinct rabbit out of a hat and find a job in Tasmania. Not only did he find a job, but his new office was so eager to have him join their crew that they created a position for him with extras to the job that was being offered. It’s always nice to feel appreciated and now Stewart can move to Tasmania with his Texan sweetie Kelsey, who has become a firm part of our family, and start to negotiate his way around the “real world”. Living in inner city Melbourne is like living in a bubble. You are surrounded by commerce and an artificial bustling reality that has very little to do with the real world. Moving to Tasmania will allow them both to relax a bit and to stretch out their minds to other pursuits. Both of them want to explore the beautiful scenery here in Tasmania and as they are moving into the unit behind the house where my daughters live in the city, they won’t have to pay rent and will be able to pay off outstanding bills and start saving towards their future life together

I asked my brother in W.A. to send me some stone worn smooth by the Southern Ocean from where I came from.

I asked my brother in W.A. to send me some stone worn smooth by the Southern Ocean from where I came from.

He walks for miles on deserted beaches taking photographs and sent me these 4 beauties earmarked as the heralds of my kettle boiling

He walks for miles on deserted beaches taking photographs and sent me these 4 beauties earmarked as the heralds of my kettle boiling

Hmmm Might need to dust the kettle! Pebbles in situ ready to tap-dance their way into Serendipity Farm history

Hmmm Might need to dust the kettle! Pebbles in situ ready to tap-dance their way into Serendipity Farm history

We were given a very similar chance when my father extended his offer to allow us to live in the house that my daughters live in. At the time we were working and studying and paying rent in Western Australia. I love Western Australia. It’s where I was born and where I grew up and it forged what makes me “me” but I also love Tasmania. I am ever the adaptable narf when I can see the benefits of a long haul move. Stewart and Kelsey will be able to split the annual bills that come with living in a house with his sisters which will leave them both a lot better off. Sometimes life changes the gameplay and you find yourself riding an entirely different bus…you think that you are headed in one direction and next minute you are looking out the passenger window and you are in Albuquerque and it’s time to get off. Your experience lies in how you deal with your bus ride and what you do with your new surroundings when you get there.

The spare bedroom is the only room with old carpet still in it

The spare bedroom is the only room with old carpet still in it

Steve and I both decided that we would remove the carpet in a recent burst of Spring cleaning. We removed the bed and  Earl realised that he could see outside

Steve and I both decided that we would remove the carpet in a recent burst of Spring cleaning. We removed the bed and Earl realised that he could see outside

I am affecting change...Bezial HATES change...Earl is wrapped up inside change...

I am affecting change…Bezial HATES change…Earl is wrapped up inside change…

A job well done and now the bedroom floor looks like the rest of the house :)

A job well done and now the bedroom floor looks like the rest of the house 🙂

Stewart and Kelsey have been given a chance to change their lives and mould them how they see fit. Not everyone gets that chance in life. Some people are stuck in lives and jobs that they see going nowhere and that they feel have no value. It’s hard to see other people making a break for the sun when you are stuck under a rain cloud but you just never know where that rain cloud is going to take you. You might just be marking time until your ship comes in. How you mark time is going to shape your personality and how you deal with what eventuates in your life. I am very philosophical here today aren’t I? I guess you get milestones in your life and although this isn’t my personal milestone, it might be a significant moment in Stewart and Kelsey’s life path. It looks like “Thanksgiving” might become part of our new family traditions…we wouldn’t want Kelsey to feel out of the loop but I am NOT eating sweet potatoes and marshmallows girl…THAT is a step too far for this little black narf 😉

Earl and a little friend... or is it?!!! This was an image that Steve found online. Doesn't this look a whole lot like Earl!

Earl and a little friend… or is it?!!! This was an image that Steve found online. Doesn’t this look a whole lot like Earl!

This week has seen us planting trees like crazy. Actually it’s been a fortnight of tree planting and now we have come to the point where we have no idea where to plant the remaining trees that we want to get into the ground. We have so many trees and not enough Serendipity Farm to do them justice. As horticulturalists we know how big these trees grow and how much space they are going to need to be happy and we can’t simply cram them all into the ground close to each other and claim ignorance at a later date. We owe these trees more than that. Most of them we grew from seed that we collected, some from other countries, sourced from the stashes of friends, new acquaintance’s, adventitious “over the fence” seed collection and gardeners that we chatted with over the gate who are incredibly generous with information and cuttings most of the time. As a penniless student hippy I have learned how to be very savvy when it comes to collecting plant material and when I want something for the garden, it’s not hard to get it and most of the time it’s free.



I have been communicating with Jess from the wonderful sustainable blog “rabidlittlehippy”. She is putting into practice everything that I want to do here. She tends to be a lot more active than I am and gets stuck in where I procrastinate a little too much methinks. You are more likely to find me pinning on Pinterest than out in the garden hacking blackberries but Steve and I are moving out of winter mode and back into the garden. Jess has been telling me about various plants that I want to institute on Serendipity Farm and never thought that I could get here and we are cooking up how to get hold of Yacon, an amazing root crop from the Andes that promises to be a natural sweetener that should do well here. It’s all an experiment really and who knows what is going to grow happily here. We have a rough idea of what the seasons are going to deliver to us now that we have been living here for almost 3 years (in December).

Rincewind in human form...

Rincewind in human form…

The tree that was dangling like the sword of Damocles in the side garden and that had us using extreme gardening techniques whenever we had to mow underneath it has been felled. I didn’t even hear it fall! Apparently the crash made the dogs jump and Steve and our friends Guy and Lee pulled it down with a thick rope and Lees Toyota Landcruiser (note Toyota…if you notice this advertisement in my obviously influential blog please feel free to send me a box of Landcruisers. I will be sure to share them with friends and family and praise your products worth to anyone who will listen 😉 ). Aside from squashing a poor shrub that had already been split down the middle by fat chickens perching on its lower branches, the side garden suffered miraculously little damage and now I can start using the area to plant out smaller shrubs and perennials that I wasn’t willing to risk being squished like grapes till that tree fell.

"ExCUSE me...I am Pinteresting here!"

“ExCUSE me…I am Pinteresting here!”

The recent planting endeavours has shown us that there are way too many trees being held captive in small pots that really should be given away to people who will appreciate them. It’s hard. Not because we don’t want to give them away, but because we grew these trees from seed. We nurtured them while we learned and those trees signify our horticultural passion and a stage in our lives where a lot of doors opened up for us and changed our direction. Moving to Serendipity Farm back in December 2010 allowed us to have space to grow but it also showed us that our city plans weren’t going to be all that compatible with our actual country reality. There are a lot of obstacles that appeared in the way and it’s our job to find a way to jump those hurdles and see those daffodils that are growing up, most determinedly, through our early piles of builder’s rubble. When you are 50 and there are 4 acres of determined weeds and invasive exotics waving in the breeze at you taunting you from the deck it’s sometimes hard to know where to start but Steve and I have plans…

Doesn't this look pretty? Well the camera tells fibs folks! It never ceases to amaze me how pretty photos of Serendipity Farm look and how rangy and terrifying reality actually is!

Doesn’t this look pretty? Well the camera tells fibs folks! It never ceases to amaze me how pretty photos of Serendipity Farm look and how rangy and terrifying reality actually is!

I SWEAR I removed all of the garlic from this area last year. I actually dug around in the soil and pulled everything I could find out! It would appear I didn't. The little mulberry tree above the garlic probably benefits from it's protective pest resistance

I SWEAR I removed all of the garlic from this area last year. I actually dug around in the soil and pulled everything I could find out! It would appear I didn’t. The little mulberry tree above the garlic probably benefits from it’s protective pest resistance

There is a stand of tall spindly Melaleuca alternifolia at the bottom of our property. It denotes an area that gets swampy in winter. Melaleuca alternifolia are also known as Tea Trees. Their leaves contain an essential oil that is known world-wide as a natural antiseptic and as such, they are a valuable resource however the Melaleuca alternifolia on Serendipity Farm are a dime a dozen and those in the tea tree garden area are predominately spindly and falling over due to over-competition and a distinct lack of light. We haven’t touched them aside from the odd thinning out event to generate a few poles to use as makeshift fencing but the other day I was looking at them and thought “why don’t we cut them down and use the area to plant out our nut trees?” Why not indeed? There is about half an acre of land being occupied by tea trees and aside from keeping a band of them (thinning out the spindly ones and letting the healthier trees reach their full potential), why not avail ourselves of some of that land to our advantage? Nut trees are a perennial food source. They keep on keeping on and like fruit trees; they offer you a source of long term food. In our family, nuts feature more than just snacks and additions to baked goods. I am vegan and make my own nut milk to use in my tea every day. They can be ground and used in many different ways and as Tasmania is perfect for growing hazelnuts, walnuts and chestnuts, why not put this half an acre of land to better use?

Green and purple asparagus! Cheers to Bev for reminding me that it is asparagus season :)

Green and purple asparagus! Cheers to Bev for reminding me that it is asparagus season 🙂

There are always compromises to be made. Serendipity Farm is bookmarked to be a food forest. To do this, we have to weigh up what we do and don’t want to remove from the garden and how we are going to mix native and exotic species to get the best of all worlds. We are playing horticultural alchemy here folks and throwing climate change and instability of world markets into the equation and suddenly a food forest is a lot more important than a few spindly Melaleuca alternifolia that are reaching the end of the line. I think, as custodians of the land, it’s up to us to make the most of it. We need to be aware of the natural cycles that are currently operating on Serendipity Farm and make sure that we don’t dent them too significantly. We need to find ways to get what “we” want, whilst maintaining equilibrium or in Serendipity Farm’s case, achieving equilibrium would be a good start.

(what's she showing us this wonky pile of debris for?)

(what’s she showing us this wonky pile of debris for?)

"BUGGER!"... three more chicks on Serendipity Farm...sigh...

“BUGGER!”… three more chicks on Serendipity Farm…sigh…

This is entirely off topic folks. When Stewart was here visiting on Sunday after having a job interview the day before he was checking something on our computer and accidently closed one of the windows that he had open that he wanted more information from . Did you know that if you do that, you can call that window back by pressing the “Control”, “Alt” and “T” buttons? Neither did I! How many times have you accidentally closed a window and had to go through the process of searching all over again or having to sift through your computers history for the day to see if you can’t narrow it down…well NO MORE FOLKS! Now, thanks to second hand info from my genius son, you can just press Control, Alt and “T” and your page will miraculously come back. This only works for the last page that you closed…if you open another page or do anything in between closing your page and using this shortcut you are on your own, but it’s great to at least know that you can catch your mistake after the event.

I had to share this with you all as this is the cleanest you are EVER going to see Steve's shed. Don't let him fib and tell you that he is tidy...he is chaos on legs!

I had to share this with you all as this is the cleanest you are EVER going to see Steve’s shed. Don’t let him fib and tell you that he is tidy…he is chaos on legs!

It’s been a whirlwind of a few weeks. I have so many photos and not enough posts to share them in! Last weeks excited bread post took over from the norm and the images are starting to back up and fall off the factory conveyor belt. I met Jo who blogs at “All the Blue Day” yesterday in our shared health food shop of choice. Poor Jo was under siege as I was distracted with the HUGE shopping day ahead of me (that started at 6.30am and  didn’t end till I got home at 3.30pm) and my adult daughters were hell bent on out consuming each other to the max…”how much is that imported Canadian maple syrup with the maple leaf shaped bottle?”…I can only thank my lucky stars that as Bethany, my youngest daughter reminded me “it’s our money and you don’t have to pay for it!” ;). Seriously though, it was lovely to meet Jo over the dates and mixed nuts and to furtively exchange lemons for dehydrated kefir grains and a dozen free range eggs…I am hoping the lovely lady behind the counter ignored us and poor Jo might not recover from our bombardment of her sensibilities but meeting a fellow blogger was a lovely experience and perhaps we can have that “cuppa” one day and really meet each other on a level, un-twitching, playing field :o)

A local thrift shop was having a winter clothing clearance and I picked up lots of clothes for $2 an item. This shot is for my daughters..."I am Robbie Rotten!" ;)

A local thrift shop was having a winter clothing clearance and I picked up lots of clothes for $2 an item. This shot is for my daughters…”I am Robbie Rotten!” 😉

I went back to the op shop a few days later and everything was going out for 50c an item! Here you see Narf7 modelling a $1 Spring outfit

I went back to the op shop a few days later and everything was going out for 50c an item! Here you see Narf7 modelling a $1 Spring outfit

Why not have some fun when you are cleaning up the detritus of ex stuffed toys...wearing another 50c jumper and rocking to Pearl Jam's "Evenflow"

Why not have some fun when you are cleaning up the detritus of ex stuffed toys…wearing another 50c jumper and rocking to Pearl Jam’s “Evenflow”

That’s the end of the line folks. It’s 5.14am on Tuesday and I have a few things to fix up before my lecturer is going to let me pass my assessment. I am learning that “criticism” isn’t always personal and that I tend to take criticism to heart rather than see it as a tool to educate me. I have been offered a chance to grow…I am choosing to take it. We need to head into town and clear out all of the boxes of past life (ours and dad’s) detritus from the unit so that Stewart and Kelsey can move in and make this small space their own. It’s a chance to clear out old papers and items that are no longer used. Let’s face it…if it has been in a unit out the back of a house in town for almost 3 years, methinks it isn’t crucial to our survival on Serendipity Farm ;). We also need to deliver the queen-sized bed that is in the spare room to the unit and swap it for the high rise bed that Steve made for me back when we lived in Western Australia. I LOVE that bed and it was our bed for many years before we moved here. Steve is going to cut the legs down a bit because aside from it being VERY high, the people that might want to visit and stay (read Kym and Bruce who are visiting in January…) may not want to have to use a step ladder to get into bed. Time to clear things out…regroup and march on…just like the daffodils do year in and year out, and hopefully we manage to flower beautifully in the process. See you all next week folks when I have a LOT of photos to share with you and no doubt life will tumble us around in some kind of interesting way to your reading advantage ;).

Today would have been my mum's birthday. I started this blog so that she could see what we were up to over here so I owe her for where this space has taken me. Thank you mum...we miss you

Today would have been my mum’s birthday. I started this blog so that she could see what we were up to over here so I owe her for where this space has taken me. Thank you mum…we miss you

Today's word cloud

Today’s word cloud


34 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. rabidlittlehippy
    Sep 18, 2013 @ 18:29:51

    Getting a major chance to change your circumstances like that doesn’t come to all. Martin has had the opportunity a few times with work. Once from London to Maidenhead (near Windsor) then out to Australia. Now we have orhestrated our own with our move to the country. We’ve been very lucky and I count myself very blessed to be living the life I now have. As much as I dream for more I also love what I have and love dreaming to make it the more of my dreams. I’ve had my rubble too and the daffodils have been hard to find in there amongst all the fallen down and collapsed dreams but they must have been there even if I couldn’t see them because here I am now. 🙂

    I envy you your trees. I am of the impatient variety and suck at planting seeds and waiting but given the unplanned success I’ve had with my apricots and my walnuts (yep, they survived the transplant but I will need to ground them asap methinks so as to survive the next transplant) I will be giving it a go again next year. My peahes didn’t make it but I now know where I went wrong so I just hope my friend will kindly let me take home a peach or 2 off her tree again this year (or just keep her peach stones for me) to try again. Being able to grow ones own from seed is something I am realising is a HUGE gift. One day it will become a wonderful blessing to others and a bigger blessing than expected to yourselves too I am sure. The day you harvest your first walnuts or almonds or whatever else you can pick from your seed grown trees. 😀

    As for being more active and all that… Horse… fertiliser! 😉 I spend 5 days inside procrastinating and then panic on a Weekend when someone else (Daddy) can help with the kids. 😛 As for the yacon, I must thank the Gardenate app on my phone for that. It came up in the plant list and as I had never heard of it I was keen to read up on it. When I read what I did and its climate and conditions are suitable I was very excited. Then to trip over it in the Diggers catalogue, well its fate was sealed! Destined to a life at Cavae and Serendipity Farm! It is having its own life changing experience. 😉 Here’s hoping it changes our lives right back. 😀

    Rincewind is BRILLIANT! I was only talking up Wyrd Sisters today actually. 😉

    Your garlic is brilliant! It is obviously as happy as a proverbial pig and totally and utterly acclimatised to your conditions! You can’t bottle acclimatisation but gods I wish you could! 🙂

    I love the idea of your melaleucas making way for your nut grove too. As wonderful as the melaleuca are and the wonders of their oil is stupendous but food vs oil, food would win for sure. Was thinking though, for space saving, can you espalier almonds? Just thinking up thunks. 😉

    LOVE your asparagus too. I planted seeds in punnets some months back and have been well rewarded by their pretty ferns sprouting and waving at me. I also have 1 purple one I bought which has a tiny little stalk waving at me. It must be a year older than my ferns which started life as the tichiest little asparagus spears I’ve ever seen. So girly I know but they are really so very cute! 😉 I can’t wait to plant them out (once their bed is built) but I have stones and weeds to move first. And not keepable weeds either unfortunately. *sigh*

    Lucky you meeting up with Jo too. One day I hope to meet you both in the flesh but until that day the blogosphere and email will do just fine.

    Your chooks are to be saluted for their tenacity/stupidity and if I could I’d happily take your chiks to a new home. Not that their long term survival is assured for much longer than at yours. Sure, no feral cats but the pot would be their destiny here anyway.

    Happy birthday to your Mum too. Thinking of you. xx


    • narf77
      Sep 19, 2013 @ 04:28:28

      What a wonderful comment! I think I might print it out and frame it for when I need a “daffodil” :). Poor Jo might never recover from meeting us to be honest but hey, that’s what you get when you meet the country “mice” ;). I was seriously distracted and spent the day running around like a chook with my head cut off. I only learned to drive when I was 32 so driving around the city with my 2 daughters makes me UBER careful about what I am doing and adds to the stress. Steve drives most of the time so it’s not like I get all that much opportunity to hone my driving “skills” ;). I am SO excited about the yacon…fingers crossed it thrives and grows like topsy here. That chook had 4 babies and one died but we threw her into the outside enclosure with the semi rooned rooster and another hen that hatched out a chick. They are all still alive as far as we know and we throw grain into them and they have their own rooster (of sorts) so we have all kinds of chook nooks going on here. The feral cats seem to have gotten the message about chooks. If they are inside the fence, they are not to be touched. Outside and their fluffy bums are toast. Whenever a chook hatches out babies we now try to hurl them into the outside enclosure. At the moment the chooks all seem to be laying in the coop again. I changed their nesting hay and added some nice soft sawdust curls and suddenly they are all laying in there. Can’t say I blame them, it’s not been very nice outside of late. Hopefully most of they stay un-clucked this year. Have a great day and week Jess and cheers again for the yacon babies. Any idea how they arrive here and if we need to sign for them or anything?


      • rabidlittlehippy
        Sep 19, 2013 @ 04:33:41

        I couldn’t tel you about the arrival of the yacon I’m afraid but it should arrive pretty soon.
        My chooks are on the lay again and Miss Mandy is sitting 2 eggs again. Blackie is sitting but the eggs she sits keep changing. She’s been there 4-5 weeks now I think. 😦

      • narf77
        Sep 19, 2013 @ 04:49:01

        What are you doing up ma’am?! I guess it’s later than I used to get up and I DID lay there for 20 minutes this morning before I turned myself out of bed and I DID take my time over making my first cup of tea ;). I think 4 – 5 weeks might herald a cluck out of luck 😉

      • rabidlittlehippy
        Sep 19, 2013 @ 04:55:48

        Oh her eggs are fertile. I’ve checked and they are viable, it’s just that someone keeps eating them and so the lead keeps turning over. Someone prefers to lay in that box too.
        Up with Orik and a cough since 3:23. Glad I was in bed by 10 last night.

      • narf77
        Sep 19, 2013 @ 05:10:53

        Gonna be a L.O.N.G. day…

      • rabidlittlehippy
        Sep 19, 2013 @ 05:17:08


      • narf77
        Sep 19, 2013 @ 05:21:45

        L.O.L! 😉

  2. Allotment adventures with Jean
    Sep 18, 2013 @ 19:51:28

    Looks like big changes in the family – how nice to have your son and his partner in Tassie with you.
    Love the idea of the nut forrest. A good move for your nut ‘futures’.
    Lots of fun photos – great new wardrobe Fran.
    The room looks so much better with the wood on the floor exposed. Looks beautiful wood I wonder why they covered it.
    Clever girl to put stones in the kettle. I assume that is to let you know when the water boils. Cheers. Jean


    • narf77
      Sep 19, 2013 @ 04:36:50

      It wasn’t my idea about the stones Jean, my Lancashire grandma always had a stone or two in her kettle and it wasn’t just to let her know when it was about to boil (to circumvent the whistle shock 😉 ), in W.A. they have hard water and kettles get ruined in a few months. Adding a stone to the water agitates the mix and seems to keep the calcium from settling and forming that hard crust as quickly. It really works! We have soft water here in Tassie and kettles last forever but old habits die hard :). I felt terrible about laying waste to trees but if it means that more productive trees that can feed us will get a chance I think that they will have died a noble death and not only that, we are going to keep the timber and use it for fencing and building gates etc. so they will get a second life on Serendipity Farm 🙂


  3. Jo
    Sep 18, 2013 @ 21:40:55

    Fran, so exciting that your son is coming to Tasmania. Such a treat to have all your ‘chickies’ close by.
    I so enjoyed meeting you and your lovely girls on Monday. You are all just gorgeous, and I would love to get together for a cuppa soon. Hope the dogs’ birthday parties went well!
    Hoping your daffodils continue to bloom in the rubble of life xx


    • narf77
      Sep 19, 2013 @ 04:45:50

      Glad you are still talking to me after our tintinnabulation of a meeting! I needed a word that would express how chaotic it was and that’s a doozy ;). My girls took half the lemons and will turn them into amazing things. My own lemon pile is destined for a watery grave. It’s the only way that I can drink as much water as I am supposed to drink in a day. Aside from enormous cups of tea, water and I are not easy bedfellows and a sliced lemon thrown into the mix makes it so much easier to drink :). Let me know how you go with “the kids” Kid Creole and the coconuts (my kefir grains) send hugs and if you would like more eggs any time soon PLEASE let me know. We come into town once a fortnight and aside from giving my girls a dozen duck eggs and 2 dozen chook eggs we usually have about 8 dozen eggs in the fridge at any given time. The dogs love them but I feel entirely sacrilegious feeding eggs to dogs…it smacks of the bourgeois and doesn’t fit into our ethos. I am always looking for daffodils…I think that’s why I see them 🙂


  4. Chica Andaluza
    Sep 19, 2013 @ 00:15:32

    I really enjoyed your “philosophising” and so agree with what you say. You just don’t know where life is going to take you and sometimes it’s good for a while, then not so good but it all passes, the world and our lives change – and that’s a good thing. Loved the phot of you headbanging and Earl “Pinning”!


    • narf77
      Sep 19, 2013 @ 04:39:44

      You can’t “not” head bang to The Clash and Earl was most impressed with it. Earl was actually sitting on my chair in a vain effort to attempt to get me to get his dinner (early) instead of pinning on Pinterest. You can tell by the expression that he was entirely OVER me pinning for the day ;). Life hands you everything and its up to you what you make of it and there are a lot of people out there who really don’t get that. If you can find your happiness in simple things you are truly a lucky person 🙂


  5. Littlesundog
    Sep 19, 2013 @ 08:25:10

    Honestly Fran, I read the post through, but I ALWAYS go back to have some good laughs over the captions and pictures on your posts. You know I adore Earl, and that “ExCUSE me…I am Pinteresting here!” had me in stitches! Also, you are the most fabulous model EVER! NYC and Milan’s models could take some lessons from you! For crying out loud, modeling SHOULD be that much fun and entertaining! I love you Fran… you always bring joy and laughter to my day!


    • narf77
      Sep 19, 2013 @ 15:51:50

      Love and hugs right back atcha Lori, Earl sends licks but at the moment he is sulking with his back to me because I had to tell him to get off the kitchen table. He felt it was his right to eat the cat meat and told me that I shouldn’t be feeding them…I am persona non grata! 😉


  6. teawithhazel
    Sep 19, 2013 @ 08:25:46

    something i’ve learned, the hard way, is that fighting really hard for something is not always the best thing to do..letting go and accepting failure was a huge lesson for me and i’m now so so grateful for the lesson..

    love your comment about not eating sweet potato and’s probably the australian equivalent in yuck terms of vegemite!

    good luck with your tree planting..x


    • narf77
      Sep 19, 2013 @ 15:52:52

      Cheers Jane and I agree with you, letting go is the hardest part of all but sometimes when you do, you realise that you have been hanging on to the wrong chunk of driftwood and you start to move along again 🙂


  7. thinkingcowgirl
    Sep 19, 2013 @ 08:33:52

    I laughed when you said you are more likely to be pintresting rather than clearing brambles. I have to say that since I’ve had a break from blogging I have got so much done! I have reorganised/cleared barns and sheds and now I know what’s in them…and those guys at the dump were beginning to think I lived there 😉 Don’t worry, it really was rubbish, nothing potentially useful (or what we believe to be beautiful) has gone. But I’m missing the blogosphere and the lovely friends I’ve made. Just as well we’re heading into winter…lots of downtime to play tippety tap on the magic keys. Love your word cloud…a bit like a poem.

    Like you my pictures are now running into the hundreds…so much to document. So many cows. And spiders.

    I was wondering about the boggy land where the tea trees are – will it be ok for the nuts? Sounds like a good idea to me. A nuttery. I saw one last year in a garden, underplanted with euphorbia and scilla, very pretty – so lovely in spring with the new green leaves and the blue of the flowers.

    There always seems to be a rubbly bit where it’s a uncomfortable and bleak in terms of ideas. How to sit with the uncomfortableness and let the daffodils come in their own time is the hard part 😉

    See that glass fronted cabinet in one of your pictures? I’ve also got one similar! But filled with the fancy shoes I no longer wear, like a little museum.

    Very impressed with your fashion finds. I’ve just watched a programme on the history of knitting – wow there was some cool footage from the decades! I thought of you and your knitted trousers when they showed the 60’s stuff – they went knitting crazy then!

    Well, I’m back. I think.


    • narf77
      Sep 19, 2013 @ 15:54:12

      Your BACK! 🙂 Did I cause that? I hope you wanted to be “back” ;). I know…sometimes it takes AGES for those bloody daffodils and they seem to hide until you are least expecting them and you have to watch hard or you miss them 😉


  8. christiglover
    Sep 19, 2013 @ 10:15:53

    YAY!! I am so unreasonably excited about Stewart and Kelsey moving to Tassie! And living rent-free and near family, what could be sweeter? I love your philosophizing. “How you mark time is going to shape your personality and how you deal with what eventuates in your life.” Truth! It’s happening now. Here. Movement is just another here. 🙂 I know exactly what you mean about the bubble of city living. I feel the same in Seattle — I need to take a dirt bath when I get home. Our house has no carpet. I don’t like wall-to-wall carpeting. Nice photo of Bigus Asparagus. And YOU look GREAT! Svelt and happy. Love to you both from Olalla!


    • narf77
      Sep 19, 2013 @ 15:56:47

      One day we are going to have to meet girl…we might cause some sort of fractal dislocation (just made that up…can you tell? 😉 ) but I just put you right up there near the top of my bucket list :). If I ever win the lottery I am heading over to visit you both AND bringing you back with me (now first… buy that lottery ticket! 😉 )


      • christiglover
        Sep 20, 2013 @ 01:35:31

        I agree, Fran! We’ve now put it “out there” — let the Universe conspire to bring us together. I’ll buy a lottery ticket, too. 🙂

      • narf77
        Sep 20, 2013 @ 04:29:36

        Kymmy just told me that Saturday nights lottery is a HUGE one…might get Steve to pick up a ticket tomorrow when he is picking up our old bed to bring back from Stewart and Kelsey’s unit :). I could care less about lotteries but wouldn’t be upset if we got enough to do a reciprocal swap with my twin from Olalla :). Imagine THAT holiday?! 😉 By the way… I had a “Woo-woo” moment yesterday. I was preparing my vegetables for last nights tea and Steve was playing one of his guitars in his music room and as usual, he drifted into Mr Hendrix. I started to imagine what Mr Hendrix would say if he was able to come back for a day and see how influential he still was in the music industry and started to have a mental conversation with him. It was very interesting and after a few minutes I got the distinct impression that it wasn’t just a mental conversation that I was inventing! I started to get a bit weirded out by it all and it was about then I realised that it was around the date of the anniversary of his death and sure enough, it was exactly the day that he died! “EEK!” I am not someone who believes that we can communicate with anyone from beyond the grave and am a sceptic through and through but it wasn’t all me in that mental conversation and it was woo-woo indeed! 🙂

  9. brymnsons
    Sep 19, 2013 @ 21:49:22

    Well how amazing that your boy got that elusive job. Well done eh. When are they moving over? I love, love, love the floor in the spare room. Why would you cover that beautiful wood??? Looking forward to seeing it in January. Thank Steve in advance for cutting the bed down for us poor old buggers who have to shimmy into it lol. There is a large lotto win this Saturday, so quick go buy a ticket :). I have been typing up a blog page and when I went back it was not there! Just blank bits, ahhhh! I saw a part down the bottom with “drafts” and clicked on it. Hey presto there it was! But, there’s always a but, when I clicked on “restore draft” it didn’t. Hmmm. I ended up copying it to a word document and then repasting into the box. I lost all my photos, so reinserted them. So fingers crossed it will still be there when I reopen it and finish… heres hoping lol. The daffodil story brought a smile to my dial. They were my mother in laws favourite flower, and not long before she passed away, it was daffodil day. I always think of her when I see them x


    • narf77
      Sep 20, 2013 @ 04:24:13

      :). I love daffies, they always make me feel happy because of their yellow colour and their tenacity :). No problemo about the bed. It is currently over a metre off the floor and unless you and Bruce feel like learning to pole vault, something had to give and the legs (on the bed) are the easiest bit ;). Your images will still be there if you lose your draft. If you have uploaded them go to your dashboard and down the left hand find “Media” and click on it. That’s where all of your images are stored and if you click on (I think it’s called…) Media Library? Or something like that (can’t check now as I am typing this 😉 ) they should all open up for you including every image you have ever used. Something that WordPress have done lately is to make it easier for you to add your images. Did you load photoshop ok? If so, and you have resized your images (if you use them straight from your camera you are going to use up your blog space faster as you have a size limit) you can click on “Media” then click on the “Add New” choice on the dropdown menu. The “Library” choice will take you to all of your old images that you have uploaded for the blog. When you get to the “Add New” section there is a sort of washed out box in dotted lines. If you minimise your page (sorry if you already know this but I am used to telling my mum who knew absolutely NOTHING about computers so forgive me if I am teaching you to suck eggs 😉 ) you can drag your images straight into that dotted box and they will load from there. For ONCE WordPress did something useful! Can’t wait to read your next post :).


  10. Robbie
    Sep 20, 2013 @ 12:35:34

    I have been waiting all week to take the time to read your blog. I really appreciate all that you write…you make life seem like an adventure and something to discover….so much fun! I wish you lived next door to me, I bet you would be a great neighbor…I agree with so much you say( a lot of ‘aha’ moments in your writing-lol), but most of all I love the picture of your dog “ExCUSE me…I am Pinteresting here!”…. so much like a pit bull..I believe they are human at times-lol…:-) robbie


    • narf77
      Sep 20, 2013 @ 14:18:30

      Earl sends slobbers :). Glad you are still enjoying my writing, I chop and change around between all kinds of things, whatever is tapping me on the shoulder at the time, and I think I leave a lot of my dear constant readers behind in the process but hey, if you aren’t enjoying what you are writing about and you are solely catering to your followers, why are you doing it? ;). Glad you hitched on for the ride. Now it’s spring here we are about to launch ourselves into animation again after a lovely long winter hibernation. Earl is restless and Bezial turns 6 tomorrow and gets to go to town with “dad” and see his sister (who turns 5 tomorrow 🙂 ) and have a day out being spoiled. Earl and I are going to walk 7km to try and tire him out and when Bezial gets back, they get to burst balloons, shred bags full of thrifted soft toys and eat their weights worth of steak…not bad for a dogs life eh? 😉


      • Robbie
        Sep 20, 2013 @ 21:57:11

        Our dogs are just like our children too now that our human ones are gone….my favorite part of your posts are your dog antics! lol

      • narf77
        Sep 21, 2013 @ 04:11:58

        They aren’t short of antics so I won’t be stopping posting about them any time soon ;). It’s Bezial’s birthday today and he is off shopping in the city with Steve and poor Earl is going to walk a LONG way with me today and will probably sulk around the house till Bezial and Steve get back but then they get to burst 45 balloons! Happy day! I will get pictures 😉

  11. Namita
    Sep 23, 2013 @ 15:08:57

    Hello Fran,
    Your posts always prod us to move further to achieve the dream that we have nurtured so close to our heart. What a beautiful quote to start your post with! Nature is bringing out the best in you.
    Your doggies, your getting stones shaped by waves, love for daffodils make me feel that there is some common thread in us. Next time I am going to send you pictures of my dogs and the round stones collected from the ocean.
    Thanks for such inspiring posts!


    • narf77
      Sep 23, 2013 @ 16:37:56

      I would love to see your dogs and your round stones Namita, I LOVE stones and collect them and rumbled glass whenever we go to the beach :). That’s the wonderful thing about blogging, you get to meet so many amazing people that you would probably never have met if it wasn’t for the internet and your blog. I am very glad that we met and also feel like we have a lot in common 🙂


  12. Joanna
    Sep 24, 2013 @ 18:06:14

    …we have strange warm mist and fog going on here, seasonal something or other, temperature inversions, who knows, am willing my suburban outdoor tomatoes to ripen, and trying to persuade dogs to get out of bed. Love the thought of a forest farm and your garlic and daffodils and I love the stones in your kettle singing and rattling together all the way from where you came from. Did you ever read “Teaching a Stone to Talk” by Annie Dillard – anyway rabbiting on and have nothing of import to say, much love, Joanna


    • narf77
      Sep 25, 2013 @ 04:04:28

      I haven’t read teaching a stone to talk but I am going to hunt it out and see if I can find it at our local library :). I love stones…especially smooth ones. There is something about that continuance and their endurance that gives you a feeling of history whenever you hold one in your hand. Warm mist? Interesting! We just had a spring thunder storm complete with lightning so I would imagine we are both on the cusp of the change of seasons. We are throwing ourselves into a week of study in an attempt to get some of it out of the way before we get 2 weeks of holidays. I can then get out into my garden. I headed up to the neglected veggie garden and discovered that the spinach has finally gone to seed (planted it last year around about this time 😉 ) and it is up to my chest and feral. Lots of work weeding (sow thistles with stems thicker than my wrist!) and feeding the soil before we can plant this years summer veggies but I had best get a wriggle on or there will be “B” all for me to eat come the heat! :). I love your comments and they make me smile so I figure that lends them a degree of importance :). Have a fantastic day and week ahead and at least warm mist has a good purpose…you can “loom” out of it and terrify the postman! 🙂


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