Life on the cusp of the seasons

Hi All,


So what’s all this “Serendipity Farm” stuff all about eh? Well you can be assured that we aren’t a real farm folks. Sorry to break the apple cart for a few of you but I just read a blog post about romance novels by the illustrious Mr 23Thorns of the erstwhile blog “23thorns” (I am NOT very imaginative when addressing my literary idols) and realised that narf7 is to Serendipity Farm what romance novel readers are to real, up-front romance…sort of a safe aside while you are thinking about other things. I thought that I should clarify this as I have been getting a few new followers lately and I would HATE for them to think that there was any degree of “E.I.E.I.O.” going on at any given time here. Most of the time you are going to get the daily trials and tribulations of a scared little weird wide eyed middle aged student hippy woman who spends most of her life online when she isn’t under the bed with her sometimes protector Earl protecting the sock under the bed from dying a slow starving death and simultaneously shoveling in ice cream because EVERYTHING is better with ice cream

Before I can even BEGIN to explain the next 2 photos, I need to give you some background on them…It was last Friday night. We may, or may not, have had a bottle of wine (or 2) and we were definitely watching this absolutely AMAZING YouTube vid of a fantastic Croatian pair of cellists who are extremely talented and most delicious at the same time. What Aussie could resist 2 hot guys playing cello’s dressed in period costume and covering Acadaca eh?! Here’s the video (watch it as otherwise you will have NO idea where this is going…)

We watched it several times (as you do when you are sipping of the grape scented fluid of great happiness) and then Stevie-boy decided to share a few other classical musicians who made the cross-over to rock including Mr Nigel Kennedy and another man (who’s name escapes me now but Ms Pauline knows) who got Stevie-boy onto gypsy music. GYPSIES! Those quintessential scallywags who are prone to moving in, cashing up and then moving on to greener pastures…they are also, we are assured by Mr Borat, ever on the watch for your tears so Stevie-boy was most insistent that he should do some kind of dance to ward off the gypsy’s that we had OBVIOUSLY called forth by listening to gypsy music and that, my dear constant readers, is what brings me to these 2 images…remember, this is Stevie-boy preventing us from the gypsy’s stealing our tears and NOTHING to do with all of that red wine. Nothing at ALL 😉

If you are interested in protecting yourselves and your family from passing gypsy’s stealing your tears you may want to dance along. Here is the most tasty Mr David Garret ( I remembered his name! Ms Pauline will be MOST proud of me 🙂 ) playing the Hungarian Dance No. 5 which just so happens to be Stevie-boys gypsy dance of choice in the photos below…

Not entirely sure why the trousers had to be rolled up but they DID...I am assured this is an authentic anti tear stealing dance

Not entirely sure why the trousers had to be rolled up but they DID…I am assured this is an authentic anti tear stealing dance


As you can see there are some serious moves going on would be surprised how active you have to get to stop those gypsy's stealing your tears!

As you can see there are some serious moves going on here…you would be surprised how active you have to get to stop those gypsy’s stealing your tears!

Nature is telling me that we are going to have an early spring. I am telling nature that she is a bollocks and that she should surely be enjoying a nice, long, extended and most glorious sleep in for a bit longer. I am willing to deliver a cup of tea to her sleeping countenance just so that she doesn’t keep the fruit trees flowering, the jonquils and daffodils following suit and everything budding up. I am not completely averse to “spring” per-se, don’t get me wrong. I love little lambies frolicking as much as anyone else BUT I am not ready for spring. I haven’t even allowed my (poor addled) mind to think about it yet because spring heralds getting outside, getting physical, getting seeds started, getting Sanctuary up and running and ready to take the baton of vegetable growing that narf7 has lost someplace (probably under the bed hidden in that poor long suffering moth eaten sock!). I am just NOT READY YET alright?!




Bezial is happy about the new sunbeams gracing his deck

Bezial is happy about the new sunbeams gracing his deck


This is Honesty a perennial plant with the botanical name Lunaria annua.

This is Honesty a perennial plant with the botanical name Lunaria annua.


And THIS is honesty. Not a lot botanically going on but plenty of nasturtiums and lots of hard work needed...EEK

And THIS is honesty. Not a lot botanically going on but plenty of nasturtiums and lots of hard work needed…EEK


This is why I haven't done a lot over winter...I couldn't stop the possums from invading Poland :(. I have found a solution. Stay tuned for narf doing a happy dance twice as energetic as Stevie-boys (and documented) if it works :)

This is why I haven’t done a lot over winter…I couldn’t stop the possums from invading Poland :(. I have found a solution. Stay tuned for narf doing a happy dance twice as energetic as Stevie-boys (and documented) if it works 🙂

Besides my lack of readiness nature needs to know that the beginning of August simply isn’t spring. If we allow her to keep nibbling away at our months here and insinuating seasons willy-nilly we are going to end up with some mighty strange things going on. I know that people living in the tropics live with these mighty weird seasonal things…winter being summer and summer being HELLO torrential rain etc. is all well and good if you live in the tropics because you CHOOSE that kind of situation but I chose cold…and frost…and LONG winters and short summers (short as possible if the truth be known) and now nature is nibbling her way into my precious winter? There is NO justice! And there is no stopping mother nature when she has made up her mind. She is exactly like MY mother was…stubborn as a mule and not to be stopped…good luck…she is going to do what she wants to do and be DAMNED if “you” are going to stop her…sigh…hello spring. I am not all that happy about you strewing your bouquets and budding up my blueberries because said blueberries are knee deep in horse manure and are just about to go gangbusters in what can only be considered a most temporary housing arrangement that heralds a HUGE amount of hard slog for one narf7 of Serendipity “Farm”…

The red growth on these blueberries means that they love their new home up to their crowns in dung

The red growth on these blueberries means that they love their new home up to their crowns in dung


Another sign that spring is here...the grape vines are budding up. I will plant these cuttings out this year inside Sanctuary

Another sign that spring is here…the grape vines are budding up. I will plant these cuttings out this year inside Sanctuary

I have been walking Earl at 6am lately and it’s been very cold and frosty and dark. This morning we had a lovely almost full moon accompanying us most of the way. I wrote a little poem in my head about our new early morning friend…

The moon followed us today

A big golden puppy with old man eyes

It stayed behind the eucalyptus tree fence

We walked in silent contemplation

Until the sun threw a stick and it ran away


I am not often drawn into the unfathomable world of poetry but it was the only way that I could remember this amazing moon and how beautiful it was. Earl and I crunched our way down the road in the frost enjoying the beautiful sight.

This was taken when the sun came up. 2 new goats in Sidmouth that Earl was MOST interested in having a little chat to...

This was taken when the sun came up. 2 new goats in Sidmouth that Earl was MOST interested in having a little chat to…


Fungus and blackberries. Throw in forget-me-nots and periwinkle and you have the story of Serendipity Farm's life...

Fungus and blackberries. Throw in forget-me-nots and periwinkle and you have the story of Serendipity Farm’s life…


Big Yin (the last rooster... I am sure there is a movie title in that...) and his constant companion Duckie basking in the sun

Big Yin (the last rooster… I am sure there is a movie title in that…) and his constant companion Duckie basking in the sun

I just finished the unit on Sustainability! I haven’t been so glad to see the back of something since I last had to go to the doctors for one of those “women’s visits”. SO glad to say bid adieu to what was effectively a great big pile of green wash and bampf cemented together with torture and narf headaches.  Now we can focus on getting our next unit up and running. It’s good to be on track and the year is galloping away at a fast rate of knots so it’s really important to keep on top of things. I phoned up this morning to put an expression of interest in on our next prospective study course next year. Hopefully we get into the course, if not, I am sure that Mr Abbot has something tucked up his sleeve for penniless student hippies without the “student” shield to protect them 😦

This was taken of the deck after the big blow that took out our phone line. Phone is back, sun is out, leaves are still there ;)

This was taken of the deck after the big blow that took out our phone line. Phone is back, sun is out, leaves are still there 😉


We get to see all of the boats pootling up and down the Tamar River. This is one of the tugs based at Beauty Point after towing a bigger boat in to the city

We get to see all of the boats pootling up and down the Tamar River. This is one of the tugs based at Beauty Point after towing a bigger boat in to the city


This isn't a fizhog of a photo, it's a palm leaf looking like the letter "b". Our next assignment involves us finding letters in nature. This was a lucky break and nice and close to the house ;)

This isn’t a fizhog of a photo, it’s a palm leaf looking like the letter “b”. Our next assignment involves us finding letters in nature. This was a lucky break and nice and close to the house 😉

Its Wednesday and you can strike the unhappiness at the rapid approach of spring…I have learned that if you can’t beat them, join them and so I have decided to embrace spring and all things daffodilly and jonquilly and growing like crazy (except the forget-me-nots…can’t embrace them…) so here I am after heading up to Sanctuary with the boys and releasing the hounds on its unsuspecting population of plants that have not only weathered but survived most admirably, the storm, frost and anything else that our unseasonably mild winter threw at them. Most of the area is covered in nasturtiums but I figure at least the soil has cover so let them grow. I noticed that dad’s yellow orchid is going great guns and has decided to flower most profusely in the next week or so (not now so I can’t get a photo but whatchagonnadoeh? Maybe next week…if I remember 😉 ).

Happy chooks basking under the deck with no worries about being molested or herded by errant roosters

Happy chooks basking under the deck with no worries about being molested or herded by errant roosters


Check out the lean on this old dead tree. That pile of spent chook hay is to soften the blow when it falls. That's my story and I am sticking to it ;)

Check out the lean on this old dead tree. That pile of spent chook hay is to soften the blow when it falls. That’s my story and I am sticking to it 😉


I have all of four photos for today’s post and it’s already twelve o’clock and not only am I devoid of images but I have already roamed the property today with the dogs. I found out that a large Blackwood tree has fallen over but due to its extremely bowed trunk, it is still in the ground albeit in a newly formed hump with a few roots sticking out. I would leave it there aside from the fact that it fell down straight in the middle of my arbutus tree 😦 bollocks! I was wandering (who am I kidding…I was being dragged mercilessly behind a small determined brown and white tank!) through the jungle part of the garden and started to get the old familiar excitement that rises up whenever possibilities are afoot. I got it inside Sanctuary as well. I started to make plans for passion-fruit vine purchases, for hauling duckies boat into Sanctuary and using it as a raised bed for herbs and strawberries, for keyhole gardens and pathways around the outside to prevent determined wallabies and chooks from barreling into the sides of Sanctuary and reaching their “prey” easily…my motto is if they are going to steal it, I am going to make them work very hard to do so!

Some of the cuttings I took last year that have thrived despite being completely neglected. PERFECT for planting out on Serendipity Farm where the neglect runs like a river ;)

Some of the cuttings I took last year that have thrived despite being completely neglected. PERFECT for planting out on Serendipity Farm where the neglect runs like Usain Bolt on steroids 😉


More neglected plants. This time they are rewarding us for their neglect by flowering. I love orchids. They want so little and give so much :)

More neglected plants. This time they are rewarding us for their neglect by flowering. I love orchids. They want so little and give so much 🙂

Luckily I prepared a bit of this blog post earlier. I am at a bit of a loss for what to do today as I NEED to do some work on the gift that I am preparing for my eldest daughter Madeline in the near future or it simply isn’t going to happen. It is going to take lots of time and planning and I have done most of the planning but now I need to put in the time. My studies have had me glued to the computer but I have made a most determined push to the front and now I find myself with time on my hands and that means that I can get stuck into “the gift” as it shall be called right up to the time that I can reveal what it is/was after December 25th. I am guessing it will be the predominate part of my post come boxing day as I just checked and Christmas is on a Tuesday. I like to find out little snippets of information about Christmas…little bits that I cobble together in a sequence so that I don’t have to be terrified in one fell swoop.  Are you terrified of Christmas? Join the club! A bit closer to Christmas and I will be under the bed with a tub of good vegan ice cream (yes…there is such a thing 😉 ) but at the moment I am deluding myself that it isn’t approaching at a rampaging gallop and that it is STILL winter and narf7 is just about to toast her hands by Brunhilda who hasn’t been out since late April. What a stellar performance you wonderful (SO much more than a) wood-stove 🙂

Nature reclaiming the lawn. This is a small blackwood tree growing in the side lawn. Right next to it there is another one. If we leave them there, they will grow quickly and the lawn will cease to be

Nature reclaiming the lawn. This is a small blackwood tree growing in the side lawn. Right next to it there is another one. If we leave them there, they will grow quickly and the lawn will cease to be


My danglers. I made all of these Ms Pauline :)

My danglers. I made all of these Ms Pauline 🙂


Our summer oven, our gas bbq. As you can see it also acts as a winter repository for boots

Our summer oven, our gas bbq. As you can see it also acts as a winter repository for boots. If you squint you can see a narf in the window

So here I am at the end again…I don’t even remember the beginning as I started it last week. I remember the poem and was of two minds to not put it in but I figure it is good for you all to see that I am multi-faceted, pretty amazing really…you are very lucky to be reading this blog you know ;). I hope that wherever you are your world is treating you well and that you can find something, even a teeny tiny something, each and every day to be thankful for because like Mr Simon Townsend used to say “The world really IS wonderful” 🙂


You didn't think we could go a week without Earl being in the post did you? Here he is for all of his loyal fans and he would like to say that he would send you all an email but for his lack of opposable thumbs. You will have to content yourself with adoring him from afar ;)

You didn’t think we could go a week without Earl being in the post did you? Here he is for all of his loyal fans and he would like to say that he would send you all an email but for his lack of opposable thumbs. You will have to content yourself with adoring him from afar 😉



70 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Roz Takes
    Aug 13, 2014 @ 15:24:20

    Hi Fran,here i am back again! I needed to read this today. Yes Spring is very early this year. My Jonquils started blooming a month ago, Geraldton Wax is blooming away and Wattle is out everywhere. I would hazard a guess that we are in for a long summer. As for the dancing….I will see your Gypsy Dance and raise you 1


    • narf77
      Aug 13, 2014 @ 17:41:06

      Steve says that the gypsy dance wards off the gypsy’s for a full calender month (plus he is a bit tired and has only had 2 glasses of wine and that old magic appears to be absent 😉 ). Glad you enjoyed the post Roz, I got slightly terrified at the thought of Christmas, at the sight of Sanctuary and at having to walk Earl at 6am this morning…seems fear accompanies spring BIGTIME ;). Our wattle has been out for a while but I have been studiously ignoring it (aside from the one that fell over the church fence in the storm but we figure they are getting the benefit of the flowers so we aren’t in a hurry to cut it up 😉 ). Here’s a hug for you and if Summer is long, we just have to make sure that we go to the beach a lot 😉


  2. thecontentedcrafter
    Aug 13, 2014 @ 15:42:38

    I’m reading you hot from the press today as I won’t have any time tomorrow. Do you note how I don’t leave you til later? I was very proud when you recalled David Garret’s name as I had no clue who you were talking about – I was also relieved, else I would have felt obliged to wrack my brains and that is never a pretty sight!

    Spring seems to be quite close here too – trees budding and blossoming and all those yellow flowers starting to wake up. Today though we were treated to another antarctic blast, just to remind us that it’s not all sailing straight into spring! Siddy and I go walking earlier and earlier as the mornings get more amenable for our inner city rambling. [Siddy says ‘Hi!’ to Earl. He’d give him a thumbs up, but as you know, he doesn’t have any. So we are practising our ‘High fives’ instead.]

    Your danglers are impressive! What have you used to dangle everything off of? I received my first dangler items today all the way from our dear friends in Hawaii – and I got a lovely card and a picture on the box drawn by the great BO himself – I am thrilled 🙂

    I love your poem – the last line is genius! You must write more often and share them here. You also need a movie camera. I feel it would be even more entertaining for all his fans if we could see Stevie-boy actually dance and hear the music at the same time. Just a thought. But greatness shouldn’t be kept just for you and the dogs.


    • narf77
      Aug 13, 2014 @ 18:01:10

      Steve says that our mobile phone does amazing videos but after 2 bottles of wine and all of that rampant dancing I dare say the quality might be somewhat affected. Steve says we use strong (20kg) fishing line as it won’t degrade in the sun (mine have been there for 4 years and were up for 7 years before that elsewhere). He had spare 20kg fishing line because we come from W.A. where the fish are big. Here…they are not 😦 . SO glad you got your first dangler part from Christi, I guess I should get a wriggle on and send ours as they are just sitting there waiting to be sent. Steve says that a roll of plumbing tape and a needle appear to have joined the fray. Do you want them or not?! 😉 Glad you like the genius of my poem. I am going to buy a beret and start wearing black trousers, a striped top and a kerchief. Kymmy just told me what she has for your dangler and its perfect :). I can’t wait to see how this International dangler of great happiness pans out :). YOU were proud of me recalling David Garret…”I” was incredibly proud as most of the time I can’t remember my own name these days let alone anyone elses ;). Earl says he is trying to work out how to reach Siddy telepathically. He figures it will save a lot of time in the long run. You had best hope that he doesn’t as goodness only KNOWS what poor Siddy would turn out like if Earl ever managed to make contact!


      • thecontentedcrafter
        Aug 13, 2014 @ 18:23:35

        I would very much like to see the mobile phone video brought into action next time there is a need to dance to save the tears …. perhaps somewhere around the end of the first bottle, but prior to the emptying of the second? Please tell Steve I don’t have plumbers tape but I do have duct tape in various colours and several needles to boot – so maybe not.

        I absolutely think you should get the beret and striped jumper and black pants. You will maybe need to dye your hair black too and get some dark red lipstick to really look the part. And start smoking galoises too. Then you could attend the trendy coffee houses of Launceston, reading your poems while Stevieboy strums the guitar in moody and thought-provoking accompaniment. No need to sign up for more studies, you could earn a few bob poetessing and strumming.

        David Garret is particularly talented – in so many ways 🙂

        I’m off to make Siddy a hat out of tinfoil – I shall foil [ha-ha] that dastardly Earls plans to turn my little fluff-bum to the dark side! He can telepath all he likes and the puppy’s tiny brain will NOT be melded!

      • narf77
        Aug 14, 2014 @ 04:10:46

        Launceston has enough pretentious gits to last it for the rest of the century so I might just leave my poetry fetish for the blog methinks ;). You are right about that David Garret man, eye candy AND talent. Earl says that not only is he working on his telepathy, but he is mastering telekinesis as well and can levitate a tin-foil hat at a thousand paces…he is working on about 4360 paces as that’s as far as New Zealand (and thus Siddy’s pliant puppy brain) is away from Earls sphere of influence. Steve says that he might be retiring from the gypsy dance business as the last one left him quite depleted and drained and due to the significant lack of gypsy’s in Tasmania, he feels all of his efforts were focused on one little old Polish lady that we met when we were saving a dog (that looked like a small black Siddy…) from being squished on the road not so long ago and she was actually quite nice so he feels a bit guilty in being mean and not sharing his tears.

      • thecontentedcrafter
        Aug 14, 2014 @ 06:05:33

        ….and just like that the world loses yet another great talent! I shall tie Siddy’s tinfoil hat on with a big red ribbon. Let’s see if Earl can undo that at 4360 paces!

      • narf77
        Aug 14, 2014 @ 06:56:50

        I can see him concentrating now Ms Pauline, NEVER underestimate Mr E! Steve says that he is just spent at the moment. That dance wrung every last drop of clever gypsy thwarting out of him and he needs to rest and recuperate till they peer around the gatepost again…guess which dog name EARL (go on…guess 😉 ) didn’t want to go for a walk today! It was too cold even for Earl today and he slunk back to bed when he heard me get the house keys and snuggled up at Steve’s feet with his blanky! Bloody hell it must be cold out there for Earl to shun the chance of a walk!

      • thecontentedcrafter
        Aug 14, 2014 @ 07:01:48

        See, that is the mark of a true talent – totally done in at the end of the performance! He gave it his all and I am sure all Tassie tears must now be safe for years! Good job Stevieboy!!

        I bet you’ll be sorry later today that Earl shunned his walk 🙂 Just saying…………

      • narf77
        Aug 14, 2014 @ 08:29:54

        Lucky Stevie-boy is getting back at lunch time and I don’t have to be chained to the PC today (finished studies for the moment WOOT!) so I can watch him like a hawk…for instance…he just toddled into the lounge room and is laying on the sofa. I would normally be worried but he is just laying where Steve sits. He is starting to turn into a daddies boy that dog! The sun is coming in through the window and it’s a pretty good place to be sitting, clever boy 🙂

  3. Linne
    Aug 13, 2014 @ 15:45:46

    Narfie7, I loved the Gypsy Dance by Stevie-boy AND the cellos . . . some of those ladies seemed to be fanning their heaving bosoms rather excessively, eh? and a huge thank you to both you and the lovelly Pauline for recommending David Garrett; oh, my! I have bookmarked his rendition of “We Will Rock You”:

    . . . which reminds me of the film “A Knight’s Tale” with your oh-so-lovely Heath Ledger. Best opening scene EVER!

    The entire movie is available on YouTube as well.

    I can’t believe you are already into spring. We are not into winter (and for maybe the first time ever, I’m wishing we were . . .)

    You have the most wonderful Sanctuary-garden. Wish I lived a wee bit closer and could pop in and shift some manure for you or whatever else needs doing. I’d be in such good shape, and so quickly, too! 🙂

    Well, off to bed now that it’s cool enough to sleep . . . see you soon! ~ Linne


    • narf77
      Aug 13, 2014 @ 18:04:40

      You will get your winter sooner than you think Linnie and then you can start complaining about it ;). Note I did NOT complain about our very mild and most short winter and am clinging tenaciously to the last vestiges for all I am worth. Sanctuary looks better in that photo than it does in real life (especially after Earl decided to dig a bit and roll around a bit and run around a LOT). Huge hugs but not too close as it’s hot in Canada. Our neighbours are in Canada till September so you never know, you might have seen them wandering around your local mall 😉 If you do, tell Frank it is safe to come home as all the roosters are gone 😉


  4. Linne
    Aug 13, 2014 @ 15:50:15

    There’s a linkie to the movie here:


  5. Namita
    Aug 13, 2014 @ 18:46:48

    Hello Fran, Read your current post and also the last one. I read your posts leisurely and somewhere I become a part of your world. Belated Happy Birthday Fran! I loved the birhtday spread. Vegan cake, soup, wakame salad…..I immensely loved the three cakes sandwiched with jam and frosted perfectly. Your collection of bowls is so beautiful and lemon poppyseed cake was out of the world. Mmmmm….i can almost smell it.
    You are doing such lovely things there. baking, cooking, gardening, making artifacts (loved the dangler that you showed in the picture)…..your adorable dogs that really add so much to your posts and i just came to know that there is a poet in you. Your poem is a beautiful expression of your thoughts at that point of time. I saw the lovely daffodils and remembered the poem “Daffodils” by William Wordsworth”
    Wishing you happiness, peace and prosperity on your birthday once again.


    • narf77
      Aug 14, 2014 @ 04:12:57

      Thank you so much for your kind wishes Namita. I love reading your blog for the very same reasons. I get a real glimpse into your wonderful exotic world and your baking is amazing. I share every single recipe on Pinterest as I want everyone to be able to find those gorgeous creations. My birthday feast was all vegan but that big triple cake was most definately not. The cakes were, but the cream (2 large containers) wasn’t as I was making it for someone else. The dogs send licks and I send hugs 🙂


  6. Belinda
    Aug 13, 2014 @ 22:03:38

    your photos are so wonderful! such great snippets of daily life 🙂 …the gypsy dancing pics are especially good 😉

    i saw your post on my blog about the trade! sounds great! i loved the “minho” connection too! what’s your email address so i can get in touch?! x


    • narf77
      Aug 14, 2014 @ 04:18:07

      Squeaking with Joy Belinda! The minho connection was amazing and I almost fell off my chair. Obviously completely different origins but the same name? WOW! I will send you my email address via your email address. I didn’t even have to promise Stevie-boy anything to get him to allow me to use those photos on the blog. He is a gypsy at heart methinks ;). He does make wonderful wooden spoons out of native hardwood from our property and I would love to swap one for my very own minho hat :).


  7. brymnsons
    Aug 13, 2014 @ 23:22:25

    Ah a poet to add to your bow Fran. Lovely work. I can”t believe how quickly the year is going! We have flowers bursting out all over the place too. Still getting cold weather but the flowers aren’t listening 🙂
    Stevie boy must have done a terrific job, no stolen tears here x


    • narf77
      Aug 14, 2014 @ 04:22:59

      Excellent! His dance was far reaching. He will be stocking up on wine to do 11 more gypsy dances over the weekend while I am away at the girls house so that we don’t have to worry about them stealing our tears (and yours) for the coming year. What a hero eh? 😉 Bollocks to the flowers! They are just showing off. It is still cold here and I am wrapped in a blanky and Brunhilda is cooking away merrily so it is obviously STILL WINTER! 🙂


  8. Chica Andaluza
    Aug 14, 2014 @ 04:38:59

    That music was AMAZEBALLS!!! Of course, Steve’s dancing was too 😉 Please don’t let it be spring for you because that means autumn is only round the corner here 😦 and, if you don’t mind me saying, I love your danglers!


    • narf77
      Aug 14, 2014 @ 04:53:37

      I am blushing Ms Chica! I don’t often reveal my danglers but I thought that as we were all consenting adults around here and as we are all friends that I might just share them on a once only basis ;). That music is awesome isn’t it? How could any blue blooded Aussie NOT love a Croatian pair of cellists that rock the socks out of Thunderstruck eh?! I don’t want summer, you don’t want winter, we should strike up a deal of sorts where you move here in summer and I move over there in winter. Earl says he expects 6am walks to regress to 5am walks as it gets lighter earlier and likes a good 5km every day…just so’s you know 😉


      • Chica Andaluza
        Aug 14, 2014 @ 06:51:24

        Danglers between friends are entirely appropriate in certain situations 😉 I’m up for the swap but only if Earl can adapt to Spanish hours…walks and breakfast at lunchtime, lunch at teatime and dinner way too late at night 🙂

      • narf77
        Aug 14, 2014 @ 06:59:31

        Earl doesn’t care about what humans do. We could be up all hours of the day/night, he just buggers off to bed whenever he feels like it. He is a very self sufficient boy. Bezial on the other hand…you would have to feed him copiously in order to make up for the imposition. He says he is willing to forgedaboudit if he gets lots of that delicious tucker that you post on your blog. By the way, Earl loves beer and wine (especially spent wine cask bladders) but Bezial is hard core straight edge anti booze 😉

      • Chica Andaluza
        Aug 14, 2014 @ 19:45:21

        Happy to oblige 😉

  9. quarteracrelifestyle
    Aug 14, 2014 @ 07:10:08

    I can see why you called David Garrett “the tasty…”. Cute! and he plays beautifully.

    Love your poem Fran, that’s very clever…maybe you could just give up on the gardening thing if you don’t really like it and just be a poet. It’s a beautiful composition!!! And I love your dangly things 🙂 You are a creative and maybe Serendipity Farm should be a wildflower garden you can sit in to write and make dangles. Left to me that’s what our garden would be lol.

    Roger does silly things like that too but I am not allowed to take photos because he fears them ending up on Facebook for his 8 sisters to make fun of 🙂

    Yes, we are heading into an early Spring here too, even I have managed to drag myself away from the fire and bask in some natural warmth.

    Have a nice day 🙂


  10. teawithhazel
    Aug 14, 2014 @ 09:57:27

    lovely poem fran..and the thought of spring worries me too..because that means summer is on its way..x


  11. Littlesundog
    Aug 14, 2014 @ 10:11:40

    I think you should have saved the gypsy dance for the end of the post. I kept scrolling back up because I couldn’t control my laughter. I love your danglers – maybe you could show us a closeup of the material used to create them? Also, that fungus photograph reminds me of the “Turkey Tail” fungus that grows in our woodlands. It’s beautiful sometimes, with varying lines of color.

    Hmm, as you talk about the outdoor spring work you need to get after, I thought about how overwhelming that can be – especially when I see the photos. The same thing happens here year around as there is much to do. Spring and summer is about yard work and gardening. Fall and winter we clean up the woodlands as best we can – though we’ll never get it entirely done in our lifetime. It’s good exercise, but oh the hours and physical work. As you know, after 50, all of these tasks become less appealing. I’d blame it on the wine. Having a glass or two (or sometimes a bottle) tends to make those work tasks easy to brush off for another day! 😀


    • narf77
      Aug 14, 2014 @ 13:52:44

      🙂 Yeah, I was very surprised that Stevie-boy agreed to let me put those photo’s in my blog post and he hadn’t even touched a drop when I asked ;). Outdoor work makes me twitch at the moment but I loved getting outside and checking out the garden yesterday and felt that old familiar twitch of happiness just being outside and “in” it 🙂


  12. christiglover
    Aug 14, 2014 @ 11:09:38

    Ah, what is in fact a true farm? E.I.E.I.O. has got to be Hawaiian, since it’s all about the vowels. And the plants. Serendipity Farm is Serendipity Farm regardless of the current flora and fauna. I say this, as I brazenly call my blog Farmlet and we don’t have a single domesticated critter on the place. Yet. But still.

    And that moon these past few nights has been glorious! I will think of you and Earl this evening when it rises. Great danglers, by the way. Love from Hawaii xxoo


    • narf77
      Aug 14, 2014 @ 13:54:54

      I think that your place is most probably E.I.E.I.O. Farmlet 😉 Domesticated is just critters that haven’t gorged on your breadcrumbs quite yet ;). What about the mozzies? I am guessing that they have drunk enough of you and the B.O. to be classed as relatives by now ;). The moon is amazing. Earl and I will probably be toddling around in the dark when you are looking up at that moon…the same moon just on different sides of this big blue revolving sphere that we call home 🙂 Glad you liked my danglers. I am a dangler by trade 😉


  13. Hannah (BitterSweet)
    Aug 14, 2014 @ 11:18:24

    Ahhh, you two…! Loving those shots of your wild dance party. Steve sure knows how to get down, and have a full-body workout at the same time.

    I don’t care what you say to downplay your farm, it really is a real, full-fledged farm by this city slicker’s estimation.


    • narf77
      Aug 14, 2014 @ 13:57:51

      🙂 I just made a vegan matcha, black sesame seed and rose syrup cake and it smells amazing. I am taking it to my daughters place on the weekend so that I have something to eat when they are scoffing their full cream taro ice cream. Might even top it with a little chilled coconut cream as well ;). I was just chasing up your recipe for mint and chocolate macarons but saw that you use versawhip? We can’t get that here. I did, however, find a recipe for homemade meringues using our own home-grown Orgran “No egg” and am going to give them a go as the results looked pretty much like macaron to me. Amazing what we do when we want to reproduce something isn’t it? ;). Big hugs for being in my court Ms Hannah 🙂


  14. Margaret Griffin
    Aug 14, 2014 @ 21:36:53

    Hi, I have been reading your latest post after a most glorious early spring day here in Castlemaine. After the cold and frost of winter (another frost is forecast for tomorrow), I am hoping for a blossomy spring followed by a deliciously dry, hot summer which Castlemaine is capable of delivering in spades.

    I am sure Angus would be proud of the 2 cellists. I went on to view their rendition of ‘Highway to Hell’ – very impressive.

    Who needs lawn?

    With that glorious view of the Tamar at your doorstep, I wish you and Steve success in continuing your careers as hippy students. Although perhaps in the future, you will be able to combine the results of your studies and your talents to bring in cash to keep the wolf (or Joe Hockey) from the door.

    In the mean time, there are all those hard won oak leaves and piles of manure to shift to the Sanctuary to form the basis of an abundant harvest – Good Luck!


    • narf77
      Aug 15, 2014 @ 05:23:41

      Lovely comment Margaret. It gets very dry down here in our neck of the woods over summer. I don’t mind the couple of 30+ days that we get as I am from W.A. home of the hot temperature but I do mind the fact that it only rains about 3 times in a 5 month period so all of that wet we get over winter isn’t balanced out. The wolf is most definately sniffing around at the door isn’t he? Apparently that little white aging 4 x 4 that we have in our driveway is a hovercraft? 😉 Never seen a government distance themselves SO far from the average Joe (pun FULLY intended) in Australia. “We aren’t American Mr Hockey, WE voted you in, you didn’t buy your position sir and we can easily vote you RIGHT back out!” I would like to point out here that I DIDN’T vote for Mr Hockey or any of his cronies and never will. Never been prouder of myself for that feat than I am RIGHT now 😉 Hugs from Sidmouth where frost is the norm and gorgeous sunny days are like Rembrandt paintings at the moment (before it all dries out and reverts to dust 😉 )


  15. Joanna
    Aug 17, 2014 @ 04:59:55

    Love your supermoon poem Fran! I watched that selfsame moon glow extra bright between the storm clouds and then there were three layers, an orange layer reflecting the city lights, a sort of silvery white layer and then a huge black dark splat like a dragon in a black hole swept across the sky and me and howler went off to bed as the light show was over. Nature is fickle when it comes to calendars isn’t it. I am cheered by the thought of your spring trying to get going already, irrepressible and all that…The air sniffs of autumn to me in the early morning, damp and burnt toast, but the school holidays are in mid swing so that means it is supposed to be still mid summer here. Now look what you have done, watching that video of David G, I have found him doing Zorba’s dance and I am waving my armpits in the air and imagining a sandy Greek beach….


    • narf77
      Aug 17, 2014 @ 12:50:51

      Quiet Ms Joanna! Don’t let on to Stevie-boy (who has ” done” Greece quite a few times in his misspent youth) that you found Zorba otherwise he will add that one to his repertoire! It smells like spring today, Daphne odora out everywhere making a gorgeous lemon scented perfume and the sky is blue, grass is green and there is that smell of plant futures and grass being mown etc. that comes on Sundays in spring. I don’t think I can personally stem the tide. She is coming and bollocks to anyone who tries to stop her!


  16. gardeningkiwi
    Aug 17, 2014 @ 05:56:51

    Hi Fran. This is a funny time of year. I don’t really enjoy the cold rainy yuckiness of winter. A cold sunny day can be tolerated, but I definitely don’t relish it as much as you do. But I want to hold on to it. There isn’t much to do in winter, and so it is a slow cosy time wrapped up warm in front of the fire. it is comfortable. Spring brings with it, not only frantic activity in the garden, but it leaves you in no doubt the year has more used up days in it that new ones left and pulls us ever closer to the dreaded C word. Way too soon to be thinking about the dreaded C word. Unless you have a cool gift project to do.
    It would be so easy not do press forward in what needs to be done and linger under the covers, but we must be spurred into action by the promise of what warm weather gives us, provided we act now… well in a few weeks. So it would seem we have a few more weeks of huddling before springing into action!
    Enjoy the rest of your winter.
    Cheers Sarah : o )


    • narf77
      Aug 17, 2014 @ 12:53:08

      By the look of it winter has blown away and been replaced by spring here in Tassie. No rain for a week, sky is blue, it’s actually quite warm out there in the sunshine and it’s like nature is saying “get on your gardening gloves you lot as this is going to be a long one!” Oh well…if you can’t beat her, join her! I will be closely watching your posts from now on in order to make sure I get the right seeds in at the right time 🙂 (No pressure… 😉 )


  17. Sue Dreamwalker
    Aug 18, 2014 @ 20:10:52

    I am so pleased we do not have the little or large critters you have Narf.. And loved listening to the music that Stevie-Boy was jigging to… Made me laugh… And glad your little lonesome Rooster isn’t on his ownsome with ducky.. 🙂 A favourite saying in our part of the world by those brought up and bread here in Nottinghamshire country is – ” hey up me-duck” translation meaning ‘How are you dear’ . or Good-day in your part of the world.. 🙂
    Spring definitely should be told when to spring.. These Seasons are getting way ahead of themselves, thinking they can pop up when ever.. I mean here in August we have had Thunder, rain like in the tropic’s rain., Sun, hail, gales, and the only thing missing has been the snow.. .. Some one should tell the Seasons to look at the calender.. 🙂
    Loved my time reading your post.. Good luck in the pre-planing of that gift and please no Christmas talk just yet.. I saw Christmas decorations for sale in a store last week.. Its only August for goodness sake.. What is wrong with the world?
    Bar- humbug!… 🙂 Love Christmas really.. just not in August..
    Good luck with your studies.. and have a brill new week..
    Take care..
    And loved the poem… 🙂
    Sue xx


    • narf77
      Aug 19, 2014 @ 04:38:16

      The poem was a one off and engendered by that gorgeous super moon that followed Earl and I down the road the other day. I tend to keep my poems in my head where they belong in my case because most of them start…”there was a young man from Nantucket” 😉 My friend Rachel back in primary school’s mum was from Devon and she called everyone duck. Our duck thinks that she is a chook to be honest. She stands out in the rain calling for all of the chooks to come and join her in the snail and slug fest but they are all under the deck hiding from the raindrops…she just doesn’t get why her flock is so slack when it comes to enjoying all of that precipitation ;). Hope you have a lovely week Sue and that your slowing down and breaking out of your rigid work structure brings a new chapter to your wonderful life soon 🙂


      • Sue Dreamwalker
        Aug 20, 2014 @ 05:30:11

        Chuckles over your Chucks Duck.. LOL.. so loved this reply.. and yes winding down, and counting down.. Roll on 1st Sept.. Freeeeeeeeeeedom… 🙂 and then the work starts LOL.. as I want to paint more.. And I have the opportunity to hold a craft stall once every fortnight in a local Church which also helps several local charities .. So I can see me volunteering to serve meals etc.. Nothing is as yet planned.. I am just going with the flow..
        The Garden/ allotment is now also slowing down, and Hubby is in there every day.. Most things are now frozen.. Next will be the Tomatoes and soup making..
        I can not wait for the next chapter 🙂 xxx

      • narf77
        Aug 20, 2014 @ 05:55:55

        🙂 Can’t wait to read about it 🙂

  18. cityhippyfarmgirl
    Aug 20, 2014 @ 09:21:06

    Oh surely spring isn’t around the corner? That’s all kinds of wrong. You live so far south, daffodils shouldn’t be up yet….what’s going on!?
    Steve’s gypsy dance reminded me of my now incredibly dusty violin. Once upon a time I used to play gypsy music….sigh, once upon a time.


    • narf77
      Aug 21, 2014 @ 06:27:24

      You must have had some amazing times playing that dusty violin if Stevie-boys Gypsy tear dance reminded you of them! No doubt a degree of Gypsy throat lubrication of the spirituous or amber fluid kind was involved ;). We haven’t seen any gypsy’s sniffing around for tears so I think his magnificent efforts have worked! I know…daffies and jonquils and the almond are all flowering and the deciduous trees are all budding up and I MUST get my seeds started as I need to grow everything from seed this year if only for my pride ;). You WILL dance to the dulcet soulful tones of a gypsy violin again Ms cityhippyfarmgirl, even if it is just to Mr David Garrett on Youtube! Where there is a will, there is a (heap of waiting relatives…) way! Have a lovely day, no doubt it’s summer up there already!


      • cityhippyfarmgirl
        Aug 21, 2014 @ 06:35:53

        Cold rainy and windy. Has been all week. I hope winter holds out a little longer here. I’ve still got a shawl to finish….snail paced commitment to it hasn’t helped.

      • narf77
        Aug 21, 2014 @ 06:46:10

        At least you are getting some rain…we kept reading about how unseasonably warm and dry it was up there. I would love to make a shawl 🙂 Just finished a large blanket and need a new project to keep my poor addled study weary brain on the go. Snail pace is STILL pace 🙂

  19. Robbie
    Aug 20, 2014 @ 13:55:40

    Earl is a beauitful doggy:-) I thought your poem was quite good:-) I liked the line’ ” the sun threw a stick and it ran away”…cleaver!!!You sure are a talented lady! You are having spring right now when we are entering fall..crazy! I find it a lot of fun to read blogs where our seasons are opposite. Hearing you talk about spring makes me anxious for spring, but we have not even had fall! My favorite season here in USA is Fall…but as I get older I am enjoying spring more since it means “new” + I am enjoying fewer “new” in my life-lol
    I need to get a little crazy sometimes…and a little wine, food + and good friends is a good thing to do…a gypsy dance in the mix and all is good!


    • narf77
      Aug 21, 2014 @ 06:32:33

      I think Stevie-boy is like Earl…a bucket full of crazy and complete chaos and we all need a bit of that thrown into the mix or we get too planned and complacent about our lives…we need to live on the edge sometimes to remind us that life is precious and certainly not safe and having Earl on your kitchen table picking out fruit from the fruit bowl is a good way to live on the edge ;). I am not a poet Ms Robbie…I just had that poem pulled from my inner machinations by that amazing super moon that followed Earl and I up the frosty road. It was one of those life experiences that only happen once and I had to remember it somehow ;). My head is crammed full of studies and seed futures. I NEED to grow everything from seed this year if only for my wounded pride. I am a horticulturalist darn it! I SHOULD be good at this sort of thing! Alas, I am good at trees and shrubs and the world of perennials and annuals is foreign to me. I am learning by pinching things from you erstwhile generous gardeners who share your knowledge freely so that people like me can fill exercise books full of scratched notes (that they can’t possibly hope to read because WHO WRITES THESE DAYS!) with a view to a kill…well a killing in vegetables anyway 😉 Hugs from Sidmouth where we are probably both sharing the same temperature at the same time on both sides of the world 🙂


      • Robbie
        Aug 21, 2014 @ 06:48:14

        Just jump in like me with seed starting and you will do great:-) I can remember my first year growing everything from seed. Some of the silly things I did thinking it would work..I would be embarassed to share-lol….now it is routine and part of life….but I do have to admit I like having downtime from late November to early January…rest…but I have decided to grow microgreens for eating , so seed starting will be a yearly thing around here…but the winter ones I eat!lol

      • narf77
        Aug 21, 2014 @ 06:52:29

        Microgreens are apparently the bomb :). Can’t wait to read how you go with them :). I am going to jump in and if you know me, you will know that my bombs will be spectacular and I WILL share them, everyone needs a bit of a laugh sometimes ;).

  20. Born To Organize
    Aug 29, 2014 @ 00:52:40

    You collect your daily life and share it in the most thoughtful, entertaining and joyous way. I’ve come to expect an Earl update in each post and in fact recently shared the hilarity with a friend of Stevie-boy teaching Earl about Facebook. That still makes me laugh.

    I’m loving this whole dangler thing, but worry my items may be too small for Pauline. The fishing line you reference sounds substantial. Still thinking…but loving the idea wholeheartedly.

    Once again, I’m amazed at the beautiful place you live when I looked a second time through the letter ‘b’ and saw the clear, blue water. Wow.

    Ms. Petals landed us a room at the Coast Hotel in Victoria with a view of the harbour from the 8th floor. The smell of the water, the sound of the gulls, the boats coming and going. I could get used to that in a flash. I need to drive 45 minutes to reach the ocean, certainly no doable most days. Lovely.


    • narf77
      Aug 29, 2014 @ 04:59:31

      But WHAT A COAST you have near Ms Alys 🙂 Might be 45 minutes away but it is there :). The sea is just around the corner from us…we live on the sea side of the river and 50km in, if you wanted to pootle on a raft Huck Finn style, it turns to fresh water…cool eh? So if you were to pootle, you could catch salt water fish at our end and up near where my daughters live you could catch eels and trout etc… The river is gorgeous and never ceases to amaze me. Stevie-boy and I walked at 6am yesterday as we had to knock out more studies (relentless and seemingly never ending at the moment…) and the sunrise was amazing over the river. Pauline NEEDS small things! She needs beads and things to bulk out that dangler as otherwise she is going to have the equivalent of an African head-dress all fuzzy and spiky and BIG like David Lee Roth’s hair all shoved down onto a bit of fishing wire…people are going to talk about her international dangler (and her sanity) if she hangs it out the front so we, the people, need to ensure that beads and regular things get to be part of it. A packet of beads or a few nice beads would be amazing Ms Alys and no doubt Ms Pauline would be blissed out :). I think it’s just the fact that these things are coming from all over the world…a true international effort that doesn’t involve peace keeping troupes and soldiers and negotiations, just good old fashioned sharing and caring and the results will remind Ms Pauline of what a lucky so-and-so she is to have such amazing friends worldwide every time she looks at it :). I got your post card. You hurt Stevie-boys brain by the way…he isn’t as clever-cloggy-cluey as this little black duck and didn’t realise that Ms PDaye (like P-Diddy but much cleverer 😉 ) was backward masking her words…you can’t fool a narf though ;). I am going to frame it and put it on the wall above my PC. Call it my “international wall of great happiness” whereby narf7 buys frames from thrift shops and mounts cards, postcards etc. that wonderful people from all over the world send to her and remembers what a lucky so-and-so she is to have so many gorgeous, creative, most wonderful friends all over the world 🙂 HUGE hugs from Sidmouth where the view might be lovely but at the moment it could freeze the proverbial s off a brass monkey… flip side? Means it is going to be a drop dead gorgeous day on the river 🙂 Glad you share that photo, I hope it goes viral as Earl is up for president apparently…”Vote Earl 1″ 😉


      • Born To Organize
        Sep 06, 2014 @ 02:46:34

        HUGE hugs back at you. Boomdee didn’t realize that Narf was Fran backwards, so it seemed like a fitting way to write the card. I’m so glad you enjoyed it, as we had fun writing and posting it and then imagining it’s flight to you.


      • narf77
        Sep 06, 2014 @ 12:09:28

        “I” didn’t realise that narf was Fran backwards! I used it first up because it came from an exclamation that a cartoon character called “Pinky” (thus my sisters nickname) who used to say random things like “NARF!” and “POIT”. I love random things so Narf was my username even before I put 2 and 2 together. Must have been Karma eh? ;). I get the feeling that the card had a bit of an interesting flight and was probably stuck between parcels and snail mail and it would have certainly made the post lady work hard to try to decipher what was on it. Stevie-boy couldn’t understand it 😉

      • Born To Organize
        Sep 10, 2014 @ 13:08:03

        Really!? That is so interesting. Now I know.

        Yes..good Karma.

        So the card had an adventure, eh? In some ways, I’m amazed that something so flat and small could travel that distance, cross so many hands and then arrive in reasonable shape.

        My apologies to Stevie-boy for hurting his brain while he’s on school hiatus and trying to debrief.

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