Thursday, November 28, 2013

Lucky clover

"A best friend is like a Four Leaf Clover: hard to find and lucky to have." -Sarah Jessica Parker

This is my patch of lucky clover, out the backyard, just to the right of the clothesline. That crate is where I sit my washing basket.

I believe it to be the variety 'Trifolium repens'. It is well known to have the occurrence of four leaf clovers. I seem to have them in abundance when I go looking for them, which isn't too often. Lucky me.

It seems a shame to let the mower eat them up every couple of weeks, I should really be cashing in and doing something useful with them. 

I went looking yesterday for my sister in law.

She shared one of those facebook things, it was a picture of a four leaf clover that read, 'share me and you will receive luck'. Pfffft! I replied that I find these all the time and I would find her one. 

I made my first coffee of the day, set it on the outdoor setting and found 4, four leaf clovers before my coffee was cold. I sat down and laid them in some towelling paper and then put them in the pages of a book, to press.

The only book I had spare on my bookshelf that I wouldn't need any time in the near future, or any future was a baby names book. 

I put two clovers in each towelling paper and placed them in two pages of the book, one with the name of my brother and one in the page of my SILs name. Bit bloody cute. I told her not to read into the reason it was a baby names book!! Just something I had spare. I didn't tell her "No pressure"! But gee, it would be lovely.

 The four leaves of the lucky clover are said to represent hope, faith, love and luck.

I hope to God(the 3 leaved clover usually represents the father, the son, and the holy spirit, and the fourth leaf = god's grace), this brings my brother all these things. He has had a rough year with his health.

If you find yourself sitting by a patch of clover with white flowers like this and the markings in the leaves, take a closer look. You may well find yourself a four leaf clover ;)

These are the two I found when I was at the end of Summers pregnancy, so I have had them pressed for two years. They are dried perfectly with all their colour, and will last forever.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

New life in the garden

When Boggy mentioned the other day there was a nest in one of the trees I didn't take much notice.

On Sunday he came in and said there was a bird sitting in it if I wanted to go out and take photos. 

I never noticed it before, it's at head height tucked away in the fork of a tree, right next to a garden path.

Mother bird flew out of the nest when the kids came around being noisy, revealing three(I think) little babies.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Santa cupcakes

I had a can of condensed milk in the pantry. It was one of those cans my mum randomly hands over and says, "Take this, you might be able to use it". O.K. then.

Combine that can with looking at my christmas board on Pinterest and we(me and Izzy) made some santa cupcakes with strawberries and  cream. I don't own a piping bag, so a freezer bag with a small hole sniped out of the corner did the job with the cream.

Chocolate cupcakes using a 395 gram can of condensed milk.
150 gr margarine
3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
2 eggs (I used one duck egg)
2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
1 and a half cups SR Flour
1/2 cup milk

Preheat oven to 180 deg/160 degrees fan forced.
Beat butter and condensed milk until light and creamy.
Beat in eggs, one at a time.
Stir in flour and cocoa, alternately with milk.
Spoon into patty pans and bake for 15-20 minutes.

2 tablespoons condensed milk
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 tablespoon cocoa powder

Combine until smooth. If it is a bit stiff, add a few drops of hot water at a time to get it to a spreadable consistency, a bit like nutella.

I had to admit, it was the best tasting cake mix I have ever tasted!

My pantry is full of pegs, even the freezer!

 The santas were put on iced normal sized cupcakes. The top 'hat' sliced off the strawberry and then a bit of cream piped on and then the hat put back on top with a pom pom of cream. Chia seeds for eyes.
These were whole strawberries placed on mini cupcakes taken out of the case. Cream piped around the base of the strawberry and a pom pom on top.

Aren't these the cutest christmas cupcakes you have ever seen?
Have you got your christmas baking on yet?
Do you use pegs to keep stuff closed?

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

November garden

 Pulled out the Broad bean plants. Izzy picking the last beans and feeding them to her sister. 
Never seen a kid so keen to eat raw broad beans!

 Antirrhinums or Snapdragons 
 Nigella 'Love in a mist'
 Pink carpet roses under shade, just starting to flower
Below, same carpet rose in full sun, monster, over two metres in height and almost three wide.
Would make an awesome rose hedge.

 A double white carpet rose
 'Wedding Day' rambling rose in flower, pink fairy rose on trellis
 'Wedding day'
I took this one at 8pm last night. Still light. One kid asleep and the other on her way.
It helps having the extra daylight to do things like poison grass. This bed coming along. 
Got rocks from Mums old house on the hill and out at BILs farm :)

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

I miss the stars

It's been a year yesterday, that I gave up smoking. I knew it was getting close. 

It's been a year since I was in the right frame of mind, to say enough is enough.

It must have been a Sunday. 

Boggy had some left over nicotine inhalers, from a failed attempt at giving up. They were up the back of the medicine shelf in the top of the pantry. I got them down, read the instructions and sucked the life out of those babies, like it was oxygen for five days. Then I had to go it alone. 

I walked a lot. Summer in the pram and Izzy riding her bike. I started a week after their birthdays. I used to get stressed because I could never finish a cigarette in peace. That stress was gone.

A year on, I notice the rattle in my breathing is gone. I can breathe easier, and I'm not coughing up globs of phlegm. Pretty gross hey? I'm not sucking carbon monoxide and tar into my body, and at a lower risk of developing over a dozen types of cancer, heart attack, stroke or lung disease. Way to go I reckon.

I would have saved about $4000, probably more going by the price of them now. How do some people manage to live on a wage that is already stretched and smoke as well? Has me buggered! I don't have to carry around a packet with those disgusting pictures on them. They look much worse now I have given up, I was in denial at how bad they were as a smoker. Shrugged it off, tried not look at them.

I used to go out in the freezing cold at night, with a blanket around me and light up. I used to love to look at the stars. I miss looking at the stars. I don't miss the cold or the smokes. But I am aware I am a smoker, I just don't smoke right now.

 A year to the day I had my last fag. On the
way to my sons 21st. Giving up was the right thing
to see the girls turn 21 too.


Monday, November 18, 2013

Key to the door

Celebrated my son Jake's 21st over the weekend with family and friends. It went well. It wasn't a crazy piss up, just good food, music, conversation and lots of laughs. 

It was fantastic to have them all come together for his birthday. I made a short speech, but filled with lots of emotion. Words cannot express how much I love this kid. 

I'm not much of a selfie person, but took this one when I got home. I was happy, I thought I looked good, I felt good. 

I've been feeling a bit down lately, it's been a lot of things all ganging up on me. I am my own worst enemy though.

Twice in the past two weeks, someone has said I don't look old enough to have a 21 year old. It's nice to hear considering all I see are wrinkles when I look at me in the mirror. 

A lady I hadn't seen in a while, from my past, told me I inspire people. I inspire her. I dunno how. But the words were much needed and soaked right into my soul.

I am feeling better. 

Are you your worst enemy sometimes?
Have I inspired you? 
Ever wish you could go back to your 21 year old self and have a good chat? I do.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

How I tell the time

My place in time #30

I bought this years ago. Somewhere along the track it's been lost amongst the growing plants, never to be seen again.

I found it while weeding and brought it back to life. It could probably do with a polish, and I will get around to doing that....soon.

I took a round of wood and nailed the sundial on the top. It did have a fancy bit that did the sun casting shadow, god know where that is. I should have had a better look where I found it under some bushes, I think it's long gone.

The nail works anyway.

A bit of advice when setting your sundial. The 'nail' should be pointing South. The bird design is pointing true North. 

If you set it on daylight saving time, the bird design will not be pointing true North. So if you are a bit of a perfectionist, you would set the shadow cast an hour slower.

This is in perfect alignment with true North, the time is almost a quarter to three. 

'My place in time' is a local area history project set by Kell at blackcurrant photography

Linked with Susan at Jacana

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

5 good things in the garden

 A bird bath made with a recycled clay pipe and a terracotta pot saucer
 A rose explosion
 Agapanthus buds popping up out of the foliage
 White roses against a dark green conifer
 Awesome cabbages in the veggie patch

Monday, November 11, 2013

Our show success

We've just had our local country show this weekend. Izzy entered into seven sections of the kindy competition and I in the photography. We did pretty well.

Izzy won or got a place in everything she entered, so proud. She was first in her craft piece, a paper mache bowl that she made and painted; her decorated biscuits and her chocolate crackles. Her painting received second place and her drawing, eggs and flowers got third. She won the overall points for the kindy section and won a jigsaw puzzle and $8.50. Pretty cool.

I entered 26 photos in the photography section and got 4 firsts and 3 second placings. Happy with that, not bad for my first photo competition. I won 29 bucks. Awesoooome. I spent $18 of it on wine. Awesooome!

Definitely doing it again next year, might even get Summer involved too.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Rose gone wild

This started out as a 5ft standard weeping Renae rose, and it would have been gorgeous in itself. The root stock(the tall stick part that the Renae rose would have been grafted on to) has taken over. This happens when the rose has been damaged below the point of the graft. It is still pretty magnificent and it's Boggys(hubby) favourite. The root stock rose that has taken over is the climbing 'Blackboy'.

The Renae rose still makes an appearance

The climbing 'Gold Bunny' has been damaged too on the right and the root stock has gone nuts

The climbing 'Pierre de Ronsard' on the left is a gorgeous romantic rose.
It always comes out in an abundance of beautiful flowers.

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