I’m just doing the do…how about you?

Hi All

September appears to be a month of change on Serendipity Farm. Last week we found out that the son-and-heir was moving down to Tasmania with his Texan sweetie Kelsey and suddenly all of the piles and boxes of debris and memories that we had left languishing in the unit at the rear of our daughter’s home in the city needed to be removed, revisited and revised. The 3 “R’s” of the apocalypse folks and it has seen us moving a lot of things around in the process and getting rid of lots of “stuff” that we simply don’t have the space for and will never need.  We inherited a lot of cut glass that had lived in a glass cabinet in the spare room until last week when we decided that we would offer Stewart and Kelsey the queen sized bed it contained and would swap it for our old bed that Steve made for me about 10 years ago. Steve and I headed into town and cleared out a lot of boxes and bags of “stuff” and brought them home with us and at that point we merely thought it would be a case of “open a cupboard and stuff them in”…

Steve's "emo" respray on a little bedside set of draws

Steve’s “emo” respray on a little bedside set of draws

Still trying to make the internet his minion...

Still trying to make the internet his minion…

Nope…it wasn’t. We ended up going through the boxes of old papers, bits-and-bobs and “stuff” and have spent the better part of a week working out whether or not we want it, will need it, or have anywhere to actually put it. Most of the old papers had been kept by my father and just need to be burned so methinks a baked potato bonfire complete with roasted marshmallows is in our immediate future, however there were lots of nick-knacks etc. that hold no sentimental value to us (or anyone else still alive) so what do we do with them? They aren’t technically “worth” anything and aside from sticking them back into the glass cabinet that we liberated what should we do with them? So we found ourselves in a bit of a quandary and what made it worse was that we had our OWN “stuff” that we had been hoarding and carting around from pillar to post to deal with as well so as you can imagine, we have had piles of rubbish all over the place and Earl has been seen at regular intervals sneaking away with various articles in his beak

Cheap and plentiful, apples are my morning mainstay these days

Cheap and plentiful, apples are my morning mainstay these days

We found this teeny "faeries" egg in amongst the other eggs in a hidden nest

We found this teeny “faeries” egg in amongst the other eggs in a hidden nest

We erected the 4 poster bed that Steve made for us back when we lived in W.A. in the small middle bedroom and were amazed at how tiny the room now looks. We have decided to put our interior design skills to work and paint the whole bed white to minimise its impact. It’s a sort of stained jarrah at the moment which makes it look huge and oppressive. Aside from being a hulking great thing, nothing that was in the bedroom before fits there now so we had to take a look at the furniture in the room and move it “elsewhere”. In the process we ended up moving bedroom furniture, furniture from the lounge room (twice), things moved back and forwards and in the end we found a happy medium that took us all day Sunday to accomplish. We still have that pile of cut glass so if anyone knows what we should do with it, feel free to let us know

A most pathetic attempt to add character to a Stromboli...note to self... don't use spaghetti in the oven

A most pathetic attempt to add character to a Stromboli…note to self… don’t use spaghetti in the oven

How much more character could I want?! ;)

How much more character could I want?! 😉

Chicken, mushroom braised onion and red capsicum pie in homemade butter shortcrust

Chicken, mushroom braised onion and red capsicum pie in homemade butter shortcrust

Steve decided to tidy up his music room and go hunting for a camera charger that he needed and took all day to find it and when he did, it was in one of the boxes that he first looked in. You know those moments where you are BURSTING to say something but think better of it because of the sake of world peace? Well I had a moment like that. If I am being honest, I had about 10 moments like that all in a row and aside from having to stifle the urge to bang my head on the computer desk in front of me I am completely unable to get it through Steve’s head that if you insist on “man checks” you are going to spend a LONG time looking for anything. Couple that with a chaotic organisational system that involves “putting things away” but in no particular order or place and you can only imagine what it is like here sometimes when “something” needs to be found…sigh…

The grapes are alive!

The grapes are alive!

So are the avocado's and the hazelnuts...stick some seeds in the ground folks...whatchagottalose?

So are the avocado’s and the hazelnuts…stick some seeds in the ground folks…whatchagottalose?

The weather has been typically spring weather of late. Lots of drizzly rain and I certainly am not going to be the first one to complain about it. I want it to rain for as long as it can because the alternative is hard baked clay and blow-away silt to contend with and the longer it stays wet…the longer it stays in place and is easy to dig. The trees that we planted out are all still alive so that’s a bonus and we have decided to take a day and pull all of our potted plants out and go through them and sort them into a pile of keepers that we can justify keeping and that we actually have an area put aside to plant them out into and a pile to give away to someone. Steve wants to put them on gumtree as “free trees pick up only” and while I am all for giving them away, after our last attempt to give things away via gumtree I am not so sure that I want to engage with the natives who usually want you to drive 200km and deliver…sigh…Anyone with any good ideas about what we can do with the wealth of free trees that are going to come out of our ruthless cull please, again, let us know.

Remember that tree that wouldn't fall down?

Remember that tree that wouldn’t fall down?

It fell down

It fell down

It’s Wednesday again! How come 2013 has flown away so fast? Suddenly we are on the cusp of both hotter weather and Christmas and I am prepared for neither. I woke up at 2.30am to a loud clap of thunder and we had a small electrical storm with pelting rain that has passed now. SO glad I didn’t end up doing the washing like I was lamenting yesterday evening ;). Steve and I are starting our final course unit and have been working on a list of questions to prepare us for entering the world of Web Publishing and “Dreamweaver”. We had a problem with a link that we needed to access to complete the questions and after sending off a missive to our lecturer we decided to head off to the Beaconsfield tip and take some old bed bases that someone might get some use out of complete with headboards. I like the Beaconsfield tip, it has a really great tip shop and depending on the day that you visit, you get great bargains. The weekend lady is a tough nut. She wants profit at all costs. The weekday lady is a friend and you get your bargains extra cheap. After poring through old books and other peoples discarded treasures I ended up finding a very large baking tray that fits perfectly on Brunhilda’s over-large shelves, a complete walk through book of a game that my daughter owns and loves, a small sturdy round Huon pine cutting board, a book on recipes and crafts for fetes with lots of great cake and toffee recipes and under a heap of old books we found a book on how to use Dreamweaver! BONUS! It’s an older version but most programs don’t change all that much so we at least have something to use if we get really stuck and we can start working through how to use this complex program over the holidays

DSCF4374

It might be older but at 20c I figure it is worth it’s age in gold

What we have to do to prevent theft by stealth chook on Serendipity Farm.

What we have to do to prevent theft by stealth chook on Serendipity Farm.

Have you ever thought of developing your own website? I know that I watch how much of my WordPress blog I have used up so far and am mindful of keeping my image size low so that I don’t run out of space too fast. I have been blogging about Serendipity Farm for over 2 years now and have used up 42% of my space. For the first year I blogged daily so I don’t think I am doing too bad but the time is coming when I am going to have to pay up or ship out. The course that Steve and I are currently doing was a sort of “gap year” thing. I let Steve pick a course to do because we can’t go to university until Steve becomes an Aussie citizen (and takes the dreaded citizenship test…). Well… technically we CAN go to university but Steve would have to pay up front, something that we just can’t find a way to do so until he gets his act together and learns the inside scoop on what our past Prime Ministers ate for breakfast and what size their underpants were (in chronological order…) we have been learning about Web Design.

Now that leaves are coming back things are starting to look pretty again

Now that leaves are coming back things are starting to look pretty again

I am going to be the very proud owner of a flowering May Apple this year! "WOOT!" :)

I am going to be the very proud owner of a flowering May Apple this year! “WOOT!” 🙂

Aren't these Ceanothus beautiful? Steve pruned them well last year and they are happy

Aren’t these Ceanothus beautiful? Steve pruned them well last year and they are happy

The course might have been a gap year thing but it has opened up a wealth of possibilities to us. We have learned that with a bit of effort and a desire to learn how to get our hands a bit dirty in the world of simple code etc. we could start our own website and this blog could gain a much greater degree of security than it currently has. The more we look at it, the more interesting it becomes and with Steve the wonder techy behind us (more stubborn refusal to give in than technological genius really 😉 ) and the son-and-heir who is also technologically minded I figure we could bumble our way through the stages required to design and bring and new website to life. Whenever I see a blog that I follow mentioning “moving to a new site” I start to twitch. It usually means that we are just about to be inundated with advertisements’ and posts full of product placement. I am not blogging for fame or fortune folks. I am blogging to release the pressure of my muse’s constant undercurrent hum of “sound” so you can be assured that when we do move, it will be to nice clean unadvertised premises with a decided middle aged hippy flavour.

One of our inherited orchids in a mass of blooms

One of our inherited orchids in a mass of blooms

I thought I had killed this lovely red azalea but they are as tough as old boots. Plant them, they are incredibly hard to kill!

I thought I had killed this lovely red azalea but they are as tough as old boots. Plant them, they are incredibly hard to kill!

I love bulbs :)

I love bulbs 🙂

Steve picked up our new bbq the other day and it has been languishing inside its massive cardboard box in the shed ever since. It’s not because we don’t want to tear open the box and assemble it. Steve and I both have that gene that wants to assemble, I think it is called the Scalextric, Airfix or Lego gene and requires you to mindlessly put things together…if glue is a part of the equation, all the better! It’s like knitting in front of the television…a semi-conscious pastime that feeds something inside you and leaves you replete. The problem that we also have is that Steve has a “hurry UP!” gene and I have a “Slow and steady wins the race” (and doesn’t arrive at the finish line with a hand full of nuts and bolts that probably, really, SHOULD be on that assembled item…sigh…) gene and the two genes are incompatible. You know how like poles on magnets repel? So do Steve’s and my working genes.  It’s not just the fact that assembling a simple bbq is going to probably result in our own revisitation of the battle of Britain…we have an added problem in the form of Earl.

45 balloons and an oxygen starved narf7 makes for happy dogs on Bezial's birthday

45 balloons and an oxygen starved narf7 makes for happy dogs on Bezial’s birthday

Bezial and one of his birthday stash of toys. This one sings and so Bezial decided to let it live...for now...

Bezial and one of his birthday stash of toys. This one sings and so Bezial decided to let it live…for now…

How could a huge hulking lunk like this be so cute?

How could a huge hulking lunk like this be so cute?

Earl has a BIG problem with anything setting foot on his deck. He is fine with Steve, Bezial and me but anything else is an invader and needs to be repelled. He spends his days in an endless cycle of snoring upside down on the couch, begging for walks and parading around the perimeter of the fence that keeps Earl inside (much to the world’s relief) and the invaders out. Earl has more than his fair share of foreign invaders including feral cats and possums that invade in the night to steal the cheese that we put on our kitchen window ledge for the birds in the day, the birds that come for the cheese are included on the invader list apparently…butterflies, ants, wasps, bees ANYTHING that dares to come onto Earls deck is fair game for his displeasure…included in the process of “repelling all boarders”, is the process of making sure that the invaders KNOW without a shadow of a doubt that this is “Earl’s turf”. To do that, Earl needs to spend an inordinate amount of time peeing on anything that he feels is especially “his”.

The large arty pot prior to Earl's stamp of ownership

The large arty pot prior to Earl’s stamp of ownership

Soaked almonds that need skinning. I don't buy milk, I make it.

Soaked almonds that need skinning. I don’t buy milk, I make it.

It might take a while but the results are infinitely superior to what I can get from the shop

It might take a while but the results are infinitely superior to what I can get from the shop

We brought home a large unusual arty pot that we inherited when dad died and that has been languishing in the unit out the back of our daughter’s home in the city since we moved to Serendipity Farm almost 3 years ago. It’s most unusual, most impractical and highly visible and when we decided to place it on the deck because we had NO idea where to put it otherwise, Earl immediately homed in on it and put his tag on it. Steve noted this and headed out with a kettle of boiling water to de-mark the afflicted item and was bemused to note as he was coming back in with the empty kettle…Earl casually strolling up to the pot and re-marking it! We can only imagine the joy that Earl is going to feel when we are talking to each other again after the assembly of the bbq and we haul this shiny black behemoth of a “possession” onto the deck for summer gustatory delights and in the name of keeping the house cool in the coming hot months. I can only begin to imagine how many water bowls are going to be emptied through Earl onto our new bbq and that’s why it is still in its box and awaiting the Pimblett version of W.W.3 to rise like the phoenix from the shreds of cardboard and become the mainstay of our summer (albeit urine tinted) cooking space.

Here's what happened to narf7's veggie garden over winter...

Here’s what happened to narf7’s veggie garden over winter…

It went completely and utterly feral! Those sow thistles have stems as thick as my wrist

It went completely and utterly feral! Those sow thistles have stems as thick as my wrist

Spinach and mushrooms, both serendipitous harvests

Spinach and mushrooms, both serendipitous harvests

Its 4.39am and I am just about to pat this post on the head and send it off to the blogging version of “the printers”. I know it’s a bit less entertaining than usual and indeed, so am I. It’s the cusp of the damp and cooler weather and unlike most Northerners who are already starting to sulk about the impending rain and cold, I am sad to see our cooler, wetter weather go. I really don’t like hot weather. I am not a fan of sweat or sleepless nights bathed in the stuff. I don’t like trying to walk grumpy hot dogs on hot days or mosquitoes or the smell of the river when the oysters dry up (ECH!). I love spring and its possibilities but the long hot dry months of summer leave me restless and twitchy. I am a Northerner living in a Southerners body. I also have a vegetable garden that is NOWHERE near ready for planting out with new summer veggies. I headed up (most bravely) yesterday and waded through the mud to see that the spinach that has been the mainstay of the garden for the past year has finally decided to go to seed and is now up to my chest. I am not short. I cut some for tonight’s evening meal whilst trying to simultaneously shield my eyes from the sow thistles doing their damnedest to get into the Guinness World Book of Records for having the thickest stems.

Clivea flowers

Clivea flowers

Clivea seeds from last season's flowers

Clivea seeds from last season’s flowers

Enormous Camellia flowers

Enormous Camellia flowers

Headily fragrant Daphne odora flowers

Headily fragrant Daphne odora flowers

It’s time to haul ass and get out of winter “inside” mode and back into summer “outside” mode and I am scared. Steve and I have 2 weeks of holidays coming up and we will be outside pouring concrete, setting the final poles into the ground for our big outside enclosed veggie garden. I have plans to make a garden bed out of the various coloured wine bottles that we have been storing in the small shed that I was going to make a bottle wall out of but that I am now going to turn into a lovely raised garden (thanks to Pinterest for the idea 😉 ). The rest of the garden beds will be assembled from existing enormous wooden beams that are in situ inside the perimeter (thank goodness!) and lots and lots and lots and lots of rocks. We can spare the odd rock. Serendipity Farm is predominately made up of rocks ;). Well that’s all for today folks. Narf7 is entering “doing” territory and that’s my least explored territory of all. I am great at planning…implementing isn’t my forte but as this is my “year of doing” I had best get my act together and at least “DO” something! ;). See you next week when I should technically have some photos of lots of hard work and misery loves company so feel free to get out into your own gardens so that we will meet next Wednesday as the confraternity of hobbling, tired, scratched and maimed gardeners ;).

If Steve ever suggests that you "just pop down to the gate for a little walk with the dogs it's SUCH a lovely day..." best you pretend you didn't hear ;)

If Steve ever suggests that you “just pop down to the gate for a little walk with the dogs it’s SUCH a lovely day…” best you pretend you didn’t hear 😉

Today's word cloud image. Steve got mentioned head and shoulders above everything else so he got to sit stage left ;)

Today’s word cloud image. Steve got mentioned head and shoulders above everything else so he got to sit stage left 😉

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47 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. cathyandchucky
    Sep 25, 2013 @ 16:45:57

    Its looking good over yonder Fronkiii. Wish I had as much to blog about. My brain is full of cotton wool at the moment and I haven’t the foggiest thing to write about. 😀

    Reply

  2. foodnstuff
    Sep 25, 2013 @ 18:51:10

    Maybe you could hire Earl out to T. Abbott to repel the boats.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 04:48:52

      Earl would take up with the people smugglers I fear Bev and as his ex-owner I would be liable for the whole shebang! Best Earl stays put INSIDE the perimeter fence although I am going to train him to pee on T. Abbott if he ever comes door knocking…bugger it “I” will pee on T. Abbott if he ever comes door knocking! 😉

      Reply

      • rabidlittlehippy
        Sep 26, 2013 @ 13:01:51

        I don’t mind the heat but I don’t like ecessive heat. What I fear most though is my garden keeling over. It is VITAL that it survives as I plant to eat it! 😉 iven that our 60cm deep holes all filled up with water before it rained (high water table I guess) I am currently worrying about too much of the wet stuff. Still, with the way the climate is going I should spend more time worrying about keeping that sitting ground water somewhere useful for when we have none.
        Sending energiser bunny energy (siphoned off from my kids who are currently lapping the coffee table for the 27th time) and motivation (which I can send but have none of myself today) and here’s hoping for a summer just hot enough for veggies to go gangbusters, wet enough for us not to need to hose them down daily and long enough to get a good extended food season out of and not a minute longer. 😉

      • narf77
        Sep 26, 2013 @ 13:44:02

        LOL! We are both wishing for a miracle Jess ;). More like our veggies will bake, we will languish over having to use town water for them (and mutter when we get our water bills) and every critter this side of the peacos will try to eat them, infest them, grow on them, reproduce on them or defecate on them in one way or other…why do we do it? “BECAUSE WE CAN NATURE!” (Fran shakes her fist 😉 ). At least we are still trying…that’s a good sign 😉

      • rabidlittlehippy
        Sep 26, 2013 @ 13:46:22

        Trying? VERY trying! 😉

      • narf77
        Sep 26, 2013 @ 14:02:45

        😉

  3. Jo
    Sep 25, 2013 @ 19:32:57

    All the best on the gardening front Fran. Dig for victory! I am a bit unexcited about my garden this spring too..
    City Mission in Youngtown has all the ‘vintage’ items, I bet they’d love your cut glass, though it’s a bit of a hike from the farm…

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 04:50:49

      I could get Steve to drop it off with my daughters in the city (or he could drop it off on one of his jaunts to Bunnings for “something” when he shops fortnightly). Cheers for the idea Jo :). Any ideas on the ornamental tree fronts? We have about 300 trees that need rehousing, all things like Japanese maples, Horse chestnuts etc. Some of them are quite lovely. We just don’t have room here to do them justice whilst still growing food trees so off they have to go.

      Reply

      • Jo
        Sep 26, 2013 @ 11:42:59

        Are they in pots? I’m thinking the local school fair. They love lots of stock for their plant stalls. Keep an eye out for fair signs, and ring and offer! David at Exeter Nursery is lovely, into all things self-sufficient, also grows own vegie seeds for local seed if you need any, and has worked with Steve Solomon. He maybe would buy them? Or know some group who could use them. Good luck!

      • narf77
        Sep 26, 2013 @ 12:10:50

        We want to give them away as we like to support people starting out :). I might give David a ring, we know him quite well and I didn’t think about him. Cheers for the idea 🙂

  4. Oxy-plast
    Sep 25, 2013 @ 20:06:14

    Heya Ma! We appreciate it very much ^_^
    We will be there Friday the 11th! Doesn’t time fly when you are in a mad rush to organise everything.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 04:52:28

      I don’t believe it…it’s the son-and-heir folks! Meet Stewart (and Kelsey in the background) :). It certainly does fly fast when you are crazy racing around trying to organise the unorganisable. Want to organise us while you are at it? Spring appears to have terrified us into submission ;). See you ASAP…bring snacks!

      Reply

      • Oxy-plast
        Sep 26, 2013 @ 06:41:33

        Snacks it is. Oh! I finally found the page I was looking for http://www.houseplantsguru.com/planting-terrariums-and-wardian-cases
        Theres something you can do with the spare glass. Wardian cases!

      • narf77
        Sep 26, 2013 @ 10:46:54

        I just offered Kelsey 1 or 2 of the large rectangular glass sided containers that we bought at Bunnings years ago and have never used. You can make Wardian cases out of them if you like :). You must be getting excited about moving around about now. Hopefully we will have managed to pick up the mattress in the unit by then as it has been raining pretty steadily since our last attempt to get it.

  5. Ally
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 00:45:30

    Your stromboli is very cute!
    I could say many things about ‘man checks’ but I’ll just say: I hear you sister, loud and clear!
    I don’t know where the year has gone either, and I also dread the heat. We had a hot one today, and 35 is predicted for tomorrow.
    Your course sounds interesting.
    Goodnight narf7.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 04:57:42

      Holy CRAP you have 35?!!! We are still languishing in the teens and I am already a sook…it doesn’t bode well for me does it? ;). We need to get ourselves out into the garden before it “sets” and is impossible to dig. My veggie gardens are too free draining and I am going to have to remedy that before I waste a tonne of precious (and expensive) water on them this year. We are giving all of the non-productive ornamental trees that we grew from seed and bought through our horticultural course away so that they survive, go to someone who will treat them well and don’t use precious water this year. Time to get what we want into the ground and the rest can move on “nothing to see here!” ;). Have a great day Ally and good luck with man checks…they are part and parcel of “men” 😉

      Reply

  6. The Veggie Green
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 01:39:00

    You look very wet in that photo – gosh aren’t your dogs big, do they needs lots of exercising/walks?!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 04:59:11

      Yes…yes they do! If Earl (the brown one) doesn’t walk every day he eats the furniture and we like our furniture! Bezial is more slothful but tends to sulk when he doesn’t get a walk where Earl channels his inner termite ;). We only walked down the driveway and to the bottom of the road and we got saturated! The worst bit was that we sloshed our way back up the driveway in the pouring rain and as soon as we got to the deck it stopped and the sun came out! Sigh…

      Reply

  7. Angela @ Canned Time
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 06:49:51

    Good gosh Woman, that’s a lot of reorganizing and rearranging and fixing and,,,well you know, you did it! I guess you’ll be happy that you’ve even more family closer? So sorry it caused you all that rummaging though ;(
    I know when we moved to our house, we’d been in a tiny 1 bedroom apartment for 7 years and suddenly the world of space was our own. 8 years later and we’ve found things to go in just about every place and neither of us wants to deal with it all. I keep my kitchen neat and clean and clutter free so that’s how I keep sane. I’m the ‘thrower-outer’ in the house but I always have the attitude of ‘its your clutter, you go through it’ But he doesn’t mind clutter and I definitely DO. So, enough about that. So glad you’ll be working on your outside veggies again. We’re bundling up here…enjoy if you can. Do you ever get snow?

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 10:49:05

      We don’t get snow here because we are on the river but inland they get severe frosts and many places in Tassie get snow. We are Australias last stop before it hits Antarctica ;). I hear you with the clutter thing! It seems to gravitate to our place and we have to deal with it ;). We ignore it for months and then go on a jag of mad removal and repurposing. One day we might get around to being brutal when it comes to letting it move in the first place but I doubt it ;).

      Reply

  8. teawithhazel
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 08:07:04

    i don’t like the heat either..the thought of it scares me..those horrid days of hot northerlies with the scent of bushfires in the distance, the plants and trees drooping and sad and the bird life open beaked and panting..

    happy sorting fran..i’ve had to do lots of that in the recent past too..years of university notes and photocopied articles filled the recycling bins many times over, children’s books sent to op shops etc..i don’t miss any of it..x

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 10:52:20

      I was about to toss out our hort notes when I remembered that Kelsey said she was interested in taking the course so she might need some clarification and they might help a bit. I HATE the heat. You are much closer to heats epicentre than we are although last year was a complete and utter stinker. We gave up going out in the garden mid February and just got more and more depressed as the months of dry arid hot wind kept blowing things around like tumbleweeds. The fires were bad but so was the hot dry season and hopefully this summer will be a lot milder. It tends to be cyclical here in Tassie and we are due a bit of respite. We have 3 big bird baths for the birds to drink from but we also have 10 feral cats hanging around and the birds have to be uber careful not to fall prey to them but we like to think of it as survival of the fittest and our birds are certainly survivors!

      Reply

  9. Littlesundog
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 08:16:44

    I have been doing some autumn cleaning around here but nothing like what you’ve been up to! Honestly, you wear me out! What is your secret potion for all of that energy? I could never keep up with you, Fran!! And, I wish I could borrow Earl for a while to eradicate these darned raccoons we have problems with every night on the back porch. They can’t get access to our deer feed and corn, which are in galvanized trash cans with bungee straps holding the lids on tightly, but they sure give it a NOISY try! That stromboli “character” really cracked me up. Some day, I’m going to try making one of those!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 10:55:13

      Earl would have a raccoon frenzy! He caught a possum not so long back and shook it around like crazy. The first we knew about it was Earl, banging the possum on the sliding glass door in the middle of the night and we ended up staggering half asleep to the door to see him doing his best to knock it out cold. When we opened the door it must have scared Earl as he let it go. It ran like the Dickens and you would think it would make it think twice about coming to steal cheese from our window but it still comes! I would imagine our possums are like your raccoons but obviously our possums are stupider ;). I was trying to inject “cute” into the Stromboli and indeed, it DID look cute with perky little dough topped spaghetti eyes but at the end, you saw…pathetic! ;). They taste amazing and are über easy to make. Give it a go, your man will love it (Steve does 🙂 )

      Reply

  10. Roz Takes
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 12:23:45

    I keep losing my reply this is my third try.
    Once again an enjoyable and informative blog Fran. Please don’t be too hasty to rid yourself of the “cut glass” in your cabinet. I can spy a few pieces of value. You can find lots of information on this on the internet. Did you inherit most of these pieces? If so they could come from the Depression Era which would make them very collectable.
    I agree with the idea for your excess trees and shrubs, schools are always looking for sale able items for their stalls. Or you could take them to your local Sell, Swap and Buy. Maybe a Stall out by your gate for passing motorists with a sign”Help Green Tasmania” lol

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 12:29:24

      I like the “Help green Tassie” Roz! Great idea but I had another idea today…how about we wander around the neighbourhood, check out who looks like they could do with a few trees and shove a note in their mail box? Charity begins at home I always say but after that, I am going to take a note from you and Jo and am going to ask the Beaconsfield or Exeter schools if they would like them for fundraising purposes. Even if they only get $2 each for them they should at least raise a couple of hundred dollars (we have a LOT of them 😉 ). I always use notepad to type my replies as I ALWAYS lose them otherwise…”fool me once WordPress!” 😉

      Reply

  11. christiglover
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 12:36:01

    Ah, we work at world peace in our household also! Assembling a bbq would end up being the B.O.’s job and I would offer assistance, briefly, when asked. We work fine on the same project at different times…say a blog…where I do my thing, then he does his, then back to me, etc. BUT to work hands-on side-by-side is tricky. I’m the hurry-up, figure-it-as-I-go one, and he is the methodical, talk-out-every-detail one. Makes life interesting. 🙂 That you found the Dreamweaver book at the tip is a miracle.

    I know what you mean about dreading the long, dry summer. We don’t even get that much of it, but I’m happy to have autumn upon us. Your spring blossoms are glorious, though, and I loved your description of Earl’s deck. And all your plans and possibilities!! Especially your family website idea…I love your posts, Fran. My visit with you and the guys is a highlight of my week. Love from Olalla!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 26, 2013 @ 13:41:19

      Sounds like you are like Steve and E.P is like me! ;). I don’t have to worry about summer quite yet as apparently it has been put on hold for some reason. Raining, cold, grey and punctuated with regular cups of tea and Earl giving me sad eyes. Steve took him for a nice long walk but for some reason he thinks he should get 2 walks on a rainy day ;). That bbq is going to be something when we both try to assemble it. I will be honest, I have to help Steve as otherwise we end up with 7 nuts and 5 bolts and some flange-a-majigs that should be “on” the bbq and that aren’t…sigh…I would LOVE to leave him unsupervised but he might lose a leg, the neighbours might need to be provided with ear muffs for the duration and I don’t want to have to call him in for his tea at 11pm because he has assembled, reassembled, disassembled and just plain pulled it apart 17 times and he STILL has those nuts and bolts! ;). We must love each other to still be together after 14 years of this 😉

      Reply

  12. brymnsons
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 18:37:21

    I have to say Fran the stromboli was a bit scary. I think it would be hard to eat that one :). We have had an abundance of windy weather over here, with a sprinkling of rain here and there. Wish I could take some of those plants off your hands, but oh well, good luck with your notes in letterboxes idea. I have an idea for the bbq. Why don’t you wait until Bruce and I get there? That way we could leave the guys to ponder it’s assembly while we sit and offer help from time to time 😀 I’m sure we could leave them to do it even…. only thing is you won’t be able to cook on it until mid January. Anyway it’s a thought lol x

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 27, 2013 @ 03:39:21

      I can only imagine the “bonding” that would go on with Bruce and Steve putting the barbie together… “just another beer Bruce…we need to lubricate our brains…just another one Steve I might need to read those instructions…NAH! We will wing it…better grab us each another beer while we work…” yeah…I can see it now! 😉 At the end of the project there would be most of the packet of nuts and bolts still in the packet, some beer bottles would be propping up the barbie and Steve and Bruce would be watching the footy when we got back from a drive to get more beer ;). Wish I could give you all of the plants along with most of our chooks 😉

      Reply

  13. gardeningkiwi
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 18:55:37

    Hi Fran. I had to laugh when you described looking for the camera charger. If someone here can’t find anything then I ask if they did a ‘boy look; or a ‘girl look’ and then send the helpless male off to do a ‘girl look’ where he ends up finding what he was looking for! Sometimes it is hard being the only girl in a house of blokes – no matter how small they are!
    What about trying to flog off your trees at one of those community wide garage sales they have in your community from time to time.
    Have a lovely week
    Cheers Sarah : o )

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 27, 2013 @ 03:41:47

      We thought about the garage sale idea Sarah but as we grew most of these trees from seed we are invested in giving them to a good home. I would love to offload them on someone who has just built a home as over here people have to submit garden plans to the council BEFORE they can build! Some young family out there might be having a hard time coming up with the readies for a garden and it would be lovely to know that we helped someone get a foothold into gardening…now I just have to find out how to go about finding new home owners without getting arrested for stalking 😉

      Reply

  14. Chica Andaluza
    Sep 27, 2013 @ 02:05:46

    It was very entertaining! Gosh you’ve been soooo busy….we’ve had an attakc of autumn cleaning here. Tiring but satisfying. Sometimes we get those tiny little eggs as well. Some folk say they are first eggs from new layers, but all our hens are quite mature, so that can’t be right. Was chuckling about Earl peeing on your pot. Big Man washes down the patio every so often as it gets to dusty in the summer, and Alfi just folows him around peeing on everything!

    Reply

  15. brymnsons
    Sep 27, 2013 @ 09:48:56

    Hey thats it Fran! Put the bbq ontop of those bottles you have collected.. would make a great display 😀

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 27, 2013 @ 13:53:23

      I set up an “Earl Protection (pee) Zone” today so that he couldn’t “dampen” it’s spirits as we put it together today 😉

      Reply

  16. Susie Taylor aka Fefe Noir
    Sep 28, 2013 @ 22:10:58

    So crazy to see your spring garden as ours is heading too quickly toward winter… the internet really does make the world a lot smaller. I’m in love with the fairy eggs and jealous you have the climate for growing avocados.

    And as always, those pups of yours look like they are up to something. 🙂

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 29, 2013 @ 03:48:34

      Not sure we are going to get any fruit from the avocados but I do know that there is a large avo growing at a friends mums home in Launceston and its colder in Launceston than where we are and it has lots of fruit every year so fingers crossed, we will to :). The pups are ALWAYS up to something. Earl is especially up to something but most of the time we have to wade through the detritus of whatever is amusing him at the time and follow around after him cleaning up. Before he turned 1 he had nibbled all of our rugs, had eaten most of the plants on the deck (those that he hadn’t pushed over…), he had chewed holes in just about every shoe that Steve owns and was only just getting warmed up! We have learned to live with less and Earl had taught us how 😉

      Reply

  17. the vegan kitchen of dr caligari
    Sep 30, 2013 @ 04:31:55

    Narf, your Stromboli is full of character indeed! 🙂
    I wish I had a garden like yours…

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 30, 2013 @ 04:38:14

      So do I! The cameral makes it look lovely. At the moment it is mud encrusted, full of collapsed tree, shed bark and things that chickens do that we won’t talk about in polite company. And there are 3 more acres of it just “lurking” in the background, full of weeds and just waiting for the sun to come out and go fully feral on our derierres…terror…thy name is narf7! 😉

      Reply

  18. kellie@foodtoglow
    Sep 30, 2013 @ 06:07:21

    A lot of ideas in here for you to go to town with – loving the wine bottle idea. Might have to nick that for myself. Now if I could just find a way of getting enough wine bottles….*snorts loudly*

    Reply

    • narf77
      Sep 30, 2013 @ 07:18:20

      OBVIOUSLY neither of us drinks wine (a-hem*) so we will both have to go to a local waste transfer station and ask for a boot load of bottles from the recycling depot 😉

      Reply

  19. biggsis
    Oct 01, 2013 @ 10:46:28

    Your stromboli looks like a trilobite. I love it! And you skin your almonds before making milk, eh? I never thought of that – does it taste better that way?
    And finally – love your photos of flowers and ‘stuff’ and dogs. You’ve been busy!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 01, 2013 @ 11:12:52

      I skin the almonds as it minimises the “bits” and it also gives me a nice white colour. I use almond milk mixed with rolled oats and blended in a high speed blender in my copious cups of tea that I inhale all day so it has to be able to cope with the heat of the tea. I find skinning the almonds makes the milk last longer as well and helps it not to curdle if I am in a hurry and want to dump it straight into my tea. The sun just came out again after weeks of rain so our names are going to be Mr and Mrs busy for the next few weeks ;).

      Reply

  20. leroywatson4
    Oct 02, 2013 @ 06:46:46

    More beauty here dear ones. Love the flowers, big pooch and what a fecund slice of paradise you inhabit. You guys are an inspiration to Jane and I to get the Beach House sorted. Our handful of beetroots pales in comparison to your wonderful array of natural splendour. Next year, we’re going for a new veg patch and a Fran inspired bottle wall or two. Peace and Love, lee and janexxxxx

    Reply

    • narf77
      Oct 02, 2013 @ 12:01:19

      Lol I LOVE how people see Serendipity Farm…through our eyes it’s fecund alright, crazy fecund where weeds are threatening to engulf us at any given time ;). I guess the grass is always greener isn’t it? I am learning patience and will wait as long as it takes for Gertrudes chocolate cake as I am sure it will be worth the wait :). We just had a HUGE black wattle tree blow down in a massive gust of wind in the gale that we are currently enduring and we can’t get out of our driveway…excitement! ;). Nature appears to be providing us with next years firewood for Brunhilda. “Cheers nature!” :). Have a great bask in that sun, it probably won’t be around for too much longer

      Reply

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