Fast forward in the life lessons

Hi All

I hope you don’t mind me using the post that I was going to post last week before all of those photos took over. This week has been a complete blur of studying in a most determined and bolshie desire to prove myself. Our lecturer handed us our final assessment and then dropped a hefty weighty unit involving so much research it is making me twitch on top of it. All of this work has to be completed by the end of November and after an initial wide eyed panic attack I have settled down to work my way through the morass of incredibly boring material that needs to be assembled and then pared away in order to hand our lecturer the gold nuggets that will give us our passing grade. SO much bampf for so little gratitude and I have learned something over the last month…I don’t want to be a web designer…not in the LEAST! So here sits narf7 tapping away when all she wants to do is get out into that gorgeous damp (it has been raining ever since I lay the last Earl proof stone in place) space and go nuts. I get the feeling that this teetering tower of study is going to make me SO glad to get it finished that gardening is going to look like pure gold. There are lessons afoot…life lessons and thus begins today’s tale…

“Whenever I fail it is a chance to learn and grow”

How’s that for a life lesson? I learned it while I was being pulled mercilessly behind Earl on our bonding Sundays where Bezial (and his ubiquitous dicky leg) and Steve get to stay home and Earl and I get to go on a long walk. I would love to say “Long leisurely walk” but I can’t. Earl starts to wind up as soon as I head into the bathroom to brush my hair and put it up in a pony-tail. The first sign of “walk”…next we have me putting on my shoes and the ears start to prick up and he gets up off the floor…trotting to the back door excitedly and sticking himself half in, half out of the dog door is next on the agenda in case any feral cat or chook has been stupid enough to instigate themselves directly outside the back door…”never let a chance go by” is Earl’s motto.

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Today’s motley collection of images is brought to you by the letter “Pee”. This little aquilegia has survived the maelstrom of pee that Earl hisses all over it every single morning. You can only begin to imaging the strength of a dogs pee when he has been holding on all night on the “pack bed”. This goes to show that if you want a perennial that will grow almost anywhere, Aquilegias are you ideal plant

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I don’t think we really need to say much about this image do we? Picture me hard at work slaving away over a hot PC trying to wrap my brain around OH&S in the media industry and forgetting that I left the pantry door open.

After surveying your territory you need to head out the back door and mark your aquilegia. It is MOST important to mark your aquilegia, I mean, anything that has the blatant NERVE to grow between the brick wall and the paving stones right outside the back door and that can withstand a daily squirt of straight ammonia and not only survive, but flower beautifully, has to be given some sort of award, and what more important award than being decorated by more pee? By this stage Earl is prancing around because he has heard the tell-tale jangle of his dog lead and his mind is now out on the road with visions of prospective road kill dancing around in his head. Earl is gone…enter the fray at your folly you STUPID WOMAN…sigh…

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Steve had to go to town the other day and this is the result…Earl under the bed with only the dust bunnies to console him about his loss and…

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Bezial and his fluffy toy laying on the carpet in the lounge room completely devoid of joy…obviously I make a terrible second best to Steve’s pack leader…

I enter the fray. I instantly regret entering the fray because it’s like the gate rising at Flemington (hope you didn’t lose too much on the cup 😉 ) and Earl is OFF! Down the steep driveway hurtling with as much speed as you can when dragging a 63kg “fat anchor” that has her heels dug in behind you. You won’t let that stop you though…there are smells OH the smells! Something has rubbed against that shrub that is right in the middle of that thicket of thistles and you just HAVE to sniff it. After that you need to limp pathetically because you have thistles in your foot and you have to wait for your stupid fat anchor to liberate them …you look around surreptitiously to check that no other dogs have seen you. The chooks saw you… lunge at them aggressively…they won’t look at you with those little beady eyes NOW!

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Not entirely sure if I have shared this with you before but this image is of the West Tamar Highway and you can see that it has collapsed thanks to the incessant amount of rain that we have been having. Don’t you just love the handrail sunk in 44 gallon drums of concrete?

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Narf7’s happiness and sadness…a juxtaposition of emotions. I am happy from 3 – 7am when I sit here researching and reading my RSS Feed Read blogs and then the deep blue funk of OH&S settles over my sunny disposition rendering me fogged up for the day

Earl and I tend to travel a road well-travelled on our Sundays. We head down the dirt road and off over the bridge to the park on the other side to listen to the dulcet tones of the dumped rooster and the loon who has been living in a caravan for almost a year now. They vie for our attention as one crows and the other one yells loudly. Once we get our fill of fresh air, windy gusts that threaten to topple us over the railing into the Tamar 90 metres below and duelling Sunday lunacy we head off back over the bridge and up the highway to be buffeted by log trucks. We turn the corner to head back down the more familiar road to come home and check the little plant stand to see if the proprietress has bothered to restock anything interesting…she hasn’t…sigh…so after Earl salutes her lack of effort with what is left in his reserves, we head off down the steep slope home…

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I am resorting to old photos now. This one shows what we had to do to remove tiles from the tiny bathroom in our daughters home in town when we were renovating the bathroom. That expression on Steve’s face isn’t all play acting

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Joe Cool and his amazing prototype penniless student hippy compost bin. The only problem with this image is that the compost bin didn’t work but Steve still has those sunglasses (if not that hair 😉 )

5km + of Sunday drag and by the time I get home I am ready for that breakfast smoothie and a chance to park my derrière out on the big wooden bench that Steve and I made years ago from wood that we plundered right here when we house sat for dad for three weeks back in 2007. It’s huge, sturdy and surprisingly well made for anything made by Steve and I but I must have won out on that project ;). I am holding a big mug of tea and a big mug of tea has never been earned more strenuously. Earl is lying on the floor quietly. His day is effectively over unless he can con someone else into picking up that lead and taking him out into the possibilities of the real world again. Earl turns 3 at the end of the month. Earl is a teenager. I can tell.

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Me raking leaves when we lived in the city. I loved that wall and every year a gorgeous Boston Ivy grew and covered the wall in it’s glorious display in autumn

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I am laughing because I just noticed that I am wearing that jumper as I type this comment…I am NOT however wearing those rather fetching thermals underneath. I have acclimatised my sad Western Australian self to the colder climes and no longer need to wear thermals. I wear entire blankets now 😉

So what was that first quote about eh? Well I have to admit to being completely and utterly terrified of failure. It stifles my efforts because I might just stuff up and look like an idiot. I put it down to success being the only thing that got a positive reward from my father figure but to be honest, I don’t think anything that I did really had an effect on how my father saw me and I learned to bypass my need for paternal acceptance and head off into the terrifying territory of self-worth. I now have a hefty sense of moi. I no longer think that I am worthless but I also have a healthy dose of tall poppy syndrome, we are all worth something but no-one is worth more because they own more, they control more or they “think” they are worth more do you get the picture? Start sticking your head up and telling me that you are special because…and narf7 is going to walk away. I don’t expect too much from the world but I DO expect a lot from myself and that’s where that nifty little new mantra is going to come in handy.

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The last shot of me I promise (well, in the city anyway 😉 ). I appear to have a handful of string. Maybe I am just about to make a nest?

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Fast forward to narf7 last week and when we actually had a sunny day to work in. The joy is obvious isn’t it?

I tend not to try. I know all kinds of things but I tend not to apply them to my day to day life because I might stuff them up or worse still, not be very good at them. If I am not good at something I tend not to repeat it. My loss really. I have decided to rectify that need to remain inactive and safe and am starting to wade out into the deep pool of possibilities, remembering that I can’t swim (seriously, I can’t) and that there aren’t any safety logs out there to catch me should I start to drown. In the past I completed several certificates in commercial cookery with a commercial cookery school. I tend to stick with certain “safe” recipes though. I must admit, part of that is because I am married to a naturally fussy “I am only one man!” Englishman who is loath to try anything he considers strange, but part of it is a mix of laziness brought about by an underlying desire not to fail. “What if it doesn’t rise?”; “What if someone doesn’t like it?” “What if it tastes weird and it gets wasted?” Not anymore. Narf7 is about to start messing about with what she knows and putting it into practice.

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Mother Teresa

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Lawrence of Arabia…maybe I should just light Brunhilda and stop pretending that the weather is going to be warm tomorrow? 😉

Hugelkultur is another point in case. I “know” how to do it. I “know” the science behind it and I “know” how it would benefit the soil and Serendipity Farm but putting what I “know” into action has me twitching. Same goes for just about everything that has me liberating my ass from this chair where the safe sport of researching is my calm harbour in the storm of activity that needs to be initiated to do what we want to do here on Serendipity Farm. Steve and I get overwhelmed by what we have to do here. Part of the problem is that we haven’t got money to facilitate instant gratification and another part is that before you can do what you “want” to do, there are 7 things that you “have” to do in order to get what you want accomplished. Sorry if I sound like I am complaining there (I am, but sorry anyway 😉 ). I guess what I am trying to say is that liberating myself from that old fear crutch is going to free me up to get out into the scary wilderness of “doing” and in the process we will
start to accomplish what we want.

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A tiny little dead bat that Steve found when he was heading out the other day. It appears it must have fallen from its mother but isn’t that gorgeous coat on his back beautiful? Poor little mite

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Ground up buckwheat groats and sunflower seeds to make my breakfast of choice in cold weather (which would be now)

We hurled ourselves into getting the fully enclosed veggie garden up and completely contained in the last week. We are more than happy with the results. We decided to enclose the glasshouse as part of the compound so that it could be used to propagate seedlings and cuttings within the structure. Now we need to plan the most efficient and effective setup for the garden beds. I have lots of cutting grown Muscat grapes that need to be planted out ASAP. I have raspberry canes soaking in seasol (seaweed concentrate) along with Marion berries that also need to be planted out. We have all kinds of seedlings and I have visions of rock herb and flower spiral gardens in the centre of the compound to attract in the beneficials and as somewhere to plant Steve’s teeny tiny grafted Ballerina apple that he produced way back when we were studying horticulture at polytechnic.

DSCF5241The ground buckwheat and sunflower seeds being mixed with homemade date and apple paste to sweeten and add nutrition

DSCF5250Chained to the machine but at least I can have my tea and porridge. The milk in my porridge is homemade sesame milk sweetened with some date paste and a dash of rose water making a most exotic breakfast and a very tasty one too. I use the same milk in my tea minus the rosewater

This week will see us creating garden beds, lugging soil components and creating our vision under cover. I don’t mind if the possums drop angry deposits on the top of the garden…nature loves a bit of extra nitrogen and at the very least it will go part way to pay us back for everything that they eat with wanton abandon in the rest of the garden. I will be taking hawthorn cuttings in the near future and have decided to plant a hawthorn hedge right around the perimeter fenceline of Serendipity Farm. I will intersperse it with cherry plums so that the native birds get lots of habitat and food. Hawthorn and plums are both incredibly able to survive arid conditions and drought and make perfect hedging specimens (well the hawthorn does 😉 ). You have to work with what will grow best and that means figs, olives, persimmons, quinces, apricots, apples and colder climate nuts. We are amassing our fruity and nutty armies to take over the farm and we even managed to grow 2 mango trees in our compost last summer that will take up residence on Serendipity Farm as soon as they are big enough to get planted out. I don’t care if they produce fruit, they will be another wonderful addition to horticultural diversity on Serendipity Farm

DSCF4964By the pricking of my thumbs something spiny this way comes…

DSCF4973Steve’s little echidna mate who bumbles around occasionally. He allowed Steve to take a few photos before digging his heels in and hiding

I might stop there for today. I have herbs to research, companion planting to check, a list of seedlings and seeds a mile long that I need to work out how to acquire and then how to plant to get the maximum results in our garden. I am only just starting to internally “Squee!” that nothing is going to be able to eat our veggies…except the aphids…and the scale…and the caterpillars…sigh… see you all next week when we should have planted out our seedlings and anything else that doesn’t grow over 6ft tall and the garden will be an impenetrable fortress of pure narf7 joy :o)

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39 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Old Fart
    Nov 13, 2013 @ 17:44:37

    I like your FREE & INDEPENDENT style …Living I mean 😀

    Reply

  2. Jo
    Nov 13, 2013 @ 19:57:27

    I am so excited about your new garden!
    Tell me how you make your porridge. Do you stir the ground seeds/milk/date paste together, or do you heat it?

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 03:33:06

      First I turn the buckwheat groats and sunflower seeds (hulled) into a meal in my vitamix. Next I mix in the date and apple paste (just 500g dried dates cooked with 2kg peeled cored apples and enough water to stop it burning till thick and unctuous). I use a jar but this makes enough for 4 breakfasts and keeps in the fridge well. I add LOTS of water at this point because buckwheat sucks water up like tiddalik the frog and I cook it slowly till it thickens. I love how starches do that…one minute you have a thin gruel and the next minute it is suddenly thick and you can stand a spoon up in it :). Once it thickens I pour it into bowls and as I mentioned, I make sesame milk. It’s delicious but does have a slight bitter tang to it. That gets offset with some date syrup (just date paste thinned out a bit with rainwater) and gives it the same sweetness as cows milk and I added a dash of rosewater and made my porridge decidedly earthy and middle easty and completely scrumptious. I get to not cook breakfast for the next few days as its already in the fridge waiting for me when I get in from walking Earl. Rain forecast today so probably no gardening but I had best find a space between the raindrops for walking Earl as he didn’t walk yesterday and he is starting to twitch…

      Reply

  3. thinkingcowgirl
    Nov 13, 2013 @ 23:04:13

    Feel the fear and do it anyway yay! You’re certainly not alone in this, it’s a very human characteristic you describe. But whatever is happening, being fully present with your experience seems to me to be a good start…otherwise we can spend our lives always searching for improvement and missing what’s actually happening! I spent far too long in my life doing this, and I’ve only just realised it. LOVE that creature what is it? Are there lots of them? Like an Australian badger 😉

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 03:46:00

      Its an echidna. It eats insects and grubs, it lays eggs and it keeps its baby in a pouch like a Kangaroo. They are very cute and are our Aussie version of a hedgehog on steroids but with their own defence mechanism. We have lots of them here in Sidmouth and they tend to live in the drains. We also have wombats in the sandy roadsides and they are great fun. It would seem that most of our Aussie animals are fat and bumbly or muscular and jumpy. We don’t do glamorous, too dry and tough, but we do humorous to a tee. I, myself, am one of the bumbly ones. I love to fossick around hunting out new treasures and poking my nose into new holes. Sometimes my nose gets a bit of a beating but most of the time it feeds the information straight into my neural cortex and my nose and my brain end up satiated. Aint life grand? 🙂

      Reply

  4. brymnsons
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 00:13:20

    Those green tiles are very similar to the ones in my main bathroom. Did you have the matching green sink and toilet to go with them?? Can’t wait to update them :). The poor dead bat was a sad little wretch, but I loved the little echidna. I wonder if we will get to see one? I have some pumpkin and rockmelon seeds going spare if you want some. I will also have some spring onions seeds too if you like 🙂
    I think we start to enjoy life more once we get to a “certain age”, probably because we have thrown off the cloak of “shoulds” and are free to be more ourselves. I certainly feel more adventurous at 50 than I ever did when I was young and so unsure of myself….

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 03:50:52

      I am with you there Kymmy. You start to fade into the background as you get older. So long as you aren’t a drama queen who needs constant attention this is a wonderful thing. No-one sees you! You get to bumble around the place doing whatever you like and so long as you do it relatively quietly no-one notices. The elderly are like societies ghosts, going about their business in a sort of smoky haze to most young people. You aren’t going to plant your seeds? I have some packets of hopefulness. My hopefulness is called “zinnia’s, Californian poppies and marigolds” and I am going to remain optimistic that I will get a lovely show of flowers in my veggie garden. My Jerusalem artichokes that I carefully buried out in the garden have started to grow and have been predated mercilessly by “something” (probably chooks) but I know that they are tenacious and I might just give them a helping hand by fencing off the area with a bit of netting while they get established. I am hoping that they turn into weeds. I love those tasty weeds! They even come with built in flatulence for the mass enjoyment of small children. I am cultivating them for my future grandchildren’s delight 😉

      Reply

      • brymnsons
        Nov 14, 2013 @ 10:32:48

        I have plenty of seeds to share :). Also because I’m not sure if we are moving next year, I don’t want to plant out anything until I know. I have always seen the elderly. To me they are a wealth of knowledge and usually can tell you a story or two. I love the way older men are just so naturally well mannered, makes me feel like I matter. It is dying out I’m afraid…

      • narf77
        Nov 14, 2013 @ 14:53:23

        You are going to have to meet Stewart. He was born 60 and is a born gentleman. The house in town might be presentable by the time you get here and I can take you around to meet the girls and Stewart (while Steve and Bruce get pickled on red 😉 ). You still don’t know if you are moving? Sigh. They certainly don’t give you a lot of time to sort things out do they! Lucky you are amazing (and when I say amazing, I mean AMAZING) at organising things so whatever they toss at you I dare say you will have an action plan :). I hope I have at least SOME veggies to share with you when you get here. The Jerusalem artichokes are poking out of the top of the old compost bin and I NEED to transplant them ASAP because the possums are a sniff away from finding them and that would be bad…VERY bad…

  5. Chica Andaluza
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 03:49:39

    You are an amazing woman and need to stop being so hard on yourself – I have so much admiration for you and Steve, the lives you lead, the joy your share with each other and with us. Go for it! Laughed so much as your description of the dog walk – although Alfi is about a third the size of Earl, he gets sooooo excited when we go out for even the shortest walk and pulls so hard on the lead (until we gt to eh ebach and can let him off in England or simply open the gate in Spain) that he wheezes like and old fart who smokes 80 woodbines a day 🙂 Luna on the other hand just behaves like a lady and looks down her nose at Alfi’s excitement.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 04:02:10

      I knew that people would say that I was being hard on myself but I am just being honest. Honesty brings out the defences in mates ;). I find honesty incredibly liberating and levelling at the same time. If I get a fat head (which I do occasionally and I even butter it with a bit of smugness so I can still fit through the door) I stand back and I take a good look at myself against the rest of the world and by gosh that fat head starts to receed rapidly like a popped balloon. Consider me popped ;). Earl didn’t get a long walk yesterday because it poured down so I took him and Bezial up to the fully enclosed veggie garden (dog exercising park) and he went mental! He was careening off the sides of the netting and bouncing around like a billiard ball…poor Bezial just stood there watching him while he raced around, back hunched like a greyhound on steroids with twice the bulk. I was starting to worry about him crashing straight through the glasshouse but then he found the mountain of spend horse manure and decided to dig it up for me. He spent the next 5 minutes furiously digging and managed to dig up an eggshell that he promptly ate. Earl then rolled in the horse poo (probably squishing a thousand worms in the process) and trotted around the perimeter of the garden peeing on every upright structure so that EVERYONE knows that the garden belongs to him. Bezial lay down for the duration and pretended not to see Earl and that he didn’t exist. I think I had best walk Earl today as otherwise he will start careening around the house…By the way I would love to give Alfi a hug. He sounds like my sort of dog. Old, farty, huffy and tenacious. A perfect dog to walk 😉

      Reply

  6. teawithhazel
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 09:05:18

    one thing that amazes me too is how many people assume they’re better than others because they have more money..how illogical is that! loving the progress of the garden..x

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 09:17:35

      Yeah, money, power etc…it’s all great but as my grandmother (wise woman that she was) would have said to any wistful illusions of grandeur…”EVERYONE has to go to the toilet. It might be gold planted but it still serves the same function!” I always remember that and smile when someone is trying to actively elevate themselves up the social ladder. Good luck to them, all too much hard work methinks and I would MUCH rather put all of my efforts into living and learning. “Bring on sideways!” 😉

      Reply

  7. cathyandchucky
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 09:35:34

    Very humerous blog Fronkiii 😀 Good luck with this final bit of your studies. Its hard but once it’s done and in the bag, that longed for degree is yours and you can start setting up that little business for yourselves. Enjoy the garden when you finally get into it. Maybe you’ll be like Earl and roll about in that big pile of horse doodooos 😀

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 14:50:29

      He dug and dug and found an old egg under the mountain of dung yesterday. He ate the egg. If I EVER do that I would like you to have me committed ok? 😉 Hope the world is treating you well…I am chained to this chair and to OH&S for the foreseeable future so am feeling decidedly sorry for myself (and that garden taunting me from afar). I will be in hog heaven when I do eventually get into it! 😉

      Reply

  8. quarteracrelifestyle
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 12:09:28

    I love the little spiky creature, how cute. Would also love your recipe for date paste!
    Fran, you sound so much like me, afraid of trying for fear of failure. I work hard at it but in some areas I fail…like my art. But it’s something just to work through, this I know. I know the pressure that puts on one when studying though, that’s serious business, take it easy on yourself – we can be such harsh self critics!!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 15:04:42

      I drank about 4 litres of Kombucha today while I was trying to get my head around OH&S for Web Designers. I think I might regret it tonight and might need some of those rubber waders that we talked about yesterday ;). Gotta say I am doing what I always do when faced with a monumental task or something that involves a whole LOT of work, I just segment it, break it down into bite sized chunks and work my way through it bit by bit. Might be snail-like but eventually you get to the other side and MAN does it look good from the top! :). Date paste… 1 cup of dates with 1 1/2 cups of boiling water poured over the top (you can do this with cold water but you have to soak it longer but then it’s raw if you are into that 😉 ). Let them soak till they are soft and if you don’t have a high powered you beaut heinously expensive behemoth of a blender (like I just so happen to have) make sure that they are really soft. When they are squishy, check for seeds and then toss the dates and the soaking liquid into your blender and let it do it’s thang. The results can be mixed with spices like cinnamon and cardamom, flavourings (think rosewater, orange flower water, vanilla) or left plain where it tastes like caramel. You can then use it in anything that you want sweetened. Dates are incredibly high in iron and if you couple that with oranges or other citrus you get an amazing hit of the stuff. Hope this helps…another lovely way to use it is mix it in equal parts with homemade nut butter (or seed butter, sunflower is delish) and use it as a sweet spread or icing on cakes. You can sub it for honey and sugar in cakes as well but I would add a bit more flour to compensate for the additional liquid. I use it in bread and yeast adores it (just ask my kefir grains that are still going strong and fermenting their little derrières off in what is effectively straight date paste with a sniff of organic soymilk…they LOVE it 🙂 ). Go experiment with impunity for you are the N.Z. honorary narf7 representative and I LOVE your posts 🙂

      Reply

      • quarteracrelifestyle
        Nov 14, 2013 @ 16:47:50

        lol, cool thanks for that. Sounds less labour intensive that date sugar!

        I am off to bed, I worked night shift last night and haven’t managed to sleep at all. Keep up the good work, you’ll be up all night peeing! No wonder ya got problems!

      • narf77
        Nov 14, 2013 @ 18:31:20

        No problems…I have the rubber waders remember! Just need to make sure that they don’t leak 😉 Hope you don’t nod off in your shift 😉

  9. christiglover
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 16:02:20

    “I don’t want to be a web designer.” Ah, the sweet clarity! You do so many things so well, Fran, and have such an amazing vision for the possibilities in so many arenas, sometimes it’s nice to know what you are not, eh? And when you said that Earl is just coming on 3 years old, I get more of a sense of all that you and Steve have accomplished in such a short time. I loved taking the walk with you and Earl, and the photos of the dogs are lol. Here’s wishing you and Steve good luck and lots of energy to get that coursework finished. Ug. Love to you both!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 18:30:07

      I finished up researching for a question on “setting up a sole operator web design business” at 2pm and finished off the Patti Smith book sitting out on a bench with the dogs. A most impressive read indeed and am just about to start on Keith Richard’s read. I am not expecting the same lilting language ;). The books are my therapy 🙂

      Reply

  10. Littlesundog
    Nov 15, 2013 @ 06:19:57

    I have never heard of an echidna! I had to look that one up. It seems this website is educational AND full of great humor! I see you rewarded me with more Earl photos. That Lawrence of Arabia could sweep me off my feet any day… literally!!

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 15, 2013 @ 08:47:45

      🙂 Maybe I should have used “Echidna” as a tag? Looks like most people haven’t heard of our humble bumbly little mate who lays eggs and then when the babies hatch they live in a pouch. Australian animals are certainly freaky but mostly on the bumbly side so they don’t scare us too much…except for those BIG spiders in Queensland. Anyone who is wondering why narf7 chose to live as far away from Queensland as she could get just needs to look up “Bird Spider”. Nuff said! 😉

      Reply

  11. cityhippyfarmgirl
    Nov 17, 2013 @ 11:50:43

    look at lovely little guy. I wonderful to be able to get photos of him!
    Sesame milk I’m so intrigued. I didn’t know about it- I’m thinking I would like it though.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 17, 2013 @ 12:59:56

      Glad you liked our little echidna mate, he visits occasionally and we have wallabies that live in the garden and eat the grass (and some of my plants but it all balances out 😉 ). Sesame milk is very white, very creamy and I think it is delicious. It does have that slight bitterness that sesame seeds have but I counteract it by adding a bit of date paste and it evens out. I use it in my tea and in anything that I need “milk” in. I am currently swapping my non-dairy kefir over from homemade organic soymilk to sesame milk. I figure the kefir is doing alright in soymilk, it won’t mind a change ;).

      Reply

  12. Joanna
    Nov 17, 2013 @ 22:32:08

    I have heard of echidnas from Aussie friends but never seen one and I think he is just lovely and I wish one would visit us. I have put one piece of kefir in a jar on its own and seeing how big it will get. No reason, just to see. Maybe it will take over the world eventually and we could live inside its glutinous insides xx Jo

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 18, 2013 @ 03:40:55

      I am in the process of converting my non-dairy date loving kefir from organic homemade soy milk to homemade sesame milk. I figure that their main paramour is the date part of the equation so I kept the date paste heavy and just swapped an equal amount of sesame for the soy. Cuts out having to use my soymilk machine and soak the beans overnight and just the “soy” part of the equation and I figure that kefir arose in the Middle East (or closer to the Middle East than Tasmania is 😉 ) and loves dates so maybe it might like a middle eastern seed (sesame) and sesame is much better for vegans, is full of calcium and I can ferment the pulp to add to pureed cooked chickpeas and it makes the most amazing hummus… really tasty stuff so there is no waste (I usually just fed the okara from the soybeans to the chooks). Gotta love this experimental food thing eh? Can’t wait to see if your glutinous mass takes over the U.K. can’t do worse than the government is at the moment…maybe you might be queen by proxy when it eventually spreads its glutinous tentacles over the countryside… best feed it well…amorphous blobs have a good memory 😉

      Reply

  13. Hannah (BitterSweet)
    Nov 18, 2013 @ 13:31:18

    Ah yes, I do know all about the tyranny of the pee monster, as I have one of my very own, too. She always picks the most prime spots to share, which is the main reason we had to fence off the garden- Keeping hungry critters out is secondary at this point! Granted, she’s rather elderly at this point and can’t be blamed for not being able to hold it or being fully aware of where it’s going… Sigh, just some of the fun of growing up, I guess. Better than the alternative for sure, so I try not to get too mad when unleashes a torrent of pee all over my new shoes. I think I need to get me some of those pee-proof plants of yours, ASAP.

    Reply

    • narf77
      Nov 18, 2013 @ 16:44:32

      LOL! Earl would get on well with her and they could have pee competitions. Earl says he bets he would win and my money is on him as well because he no sooner exhausts his supply than he has a drink to top himself up 😉

      Reply

  14. the vegan kitchen of dr caligari
    Nov 19, 2013 @ 04:23:26

    Good, good, good luck with your ffinal assestment and, by the way, Mother Teresa is irresistible 🙂

    Reply

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