Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Getting into it .........


Now in the second month of the year I have this feeling of it flitting through my fingers if I'm not
mindful ........   OPAM  has opened once again. I think I first joined in on it back in 2010, with just a couple of breaks (where I no doubt missed the sign up, since I seem to miss things like that from time to time) - Mostly my finished items are knitted or crocheted with a few sewn items here and there - its not a competition as such, but more a gentle way of helping you to keep moving along on your projects, but not forgetting just how many you have managed to achieve.  Naturally some things are quick to finish like a mug rug - while others like my WIP "Down the rabbit hole quilt" are taking more than a year in the making!!! I have a page set aside just for my OPAM now, rather than using the sidebar which I used
to erase when the new one started! Both Kris and Peg look after OPAM and have it open for sign ups till the end of Feb!  I've finished off another little cotton crocheted bag - another new design as I wanted something light, small easy to pop across your body but big enough to hold my phone and a pair of glasses - since they seem to be my constant companion these days lol .....

 I'm  also working hard on getting a baby blanket crocheted up for a gift for one of the girls in my team who will be leaving in a few weeks time.  Hope to have it finished this week..........  The summer shawl has been set aside for me to work on this, but hoping to finish off the shawl sometime during the month.

Pete was away again this weekend - off fishing/ camping with blokes from the fishing club here at Bundalong.  He's been having a great time the past few months with so many times away camping and fishing (males only). He managed to catch another Cod this weekend that was a keeper, so the freezer has quite a stash of fish in it at present!  With Pete having had 3 or 4 weekends the last part of last year and 3 out of 6 weekends away so far this year ....... I'm struggling with some green eyes and a spirit that is dying to be able to head off somewhere ......... just wish I could actually plan something in advance, but alas with not knowing just when we will be making the big move, its hard to make plans!!




Every 2nd year I enjoy a particular book that I tend to like reading over the summer months for some strange reason ........ "A Town Like Alice" by Neville Shute.  It's quite an older book now, my copy is falling apart - and is currently packed in a box 2 states away lol .... the story is based on a little bit of reality that occurred during the war.  I finally decided I needed to borrow it from the library  and started reading it last night in bed -  its amazing how a good book can transport you into such a good state of mind and body isn't it.  Of course this book was also made into a movie - one of these days I should try and get hold of it on DVD so I can watch it again!   There never seems to be enough hours in the day for everything we need and would like to do is there? I've got quite a list of things that need doing - like using up the 20 litres of olive oil I have waiting to be made into soap.  Its really only good for making soap with and I know it wont be allowed on the truck when we move, so it needs to be transformed into something that can be used or easily transported!
Early morning around 6ish when I go out before work for a short walk/run


Sunday, February 11, 2018

The 2 Bridges Walk

I really tried to do this post last week - unfortunately no matter what I tried the photos just would not
download to google or to the laptop and my ipad wouldn't allow me to write a new post ....... it seems to be happening a lot lately which is very frustrating!
  Anyhooooooo ...... last Saturday I decided I would finally head into Yarrawonga and walk the 2 bridges which go over the Murray River from Yarrawonga on the Victorian side (our closest local town 17kms from here) to Mulwala which is on the NSW side.  I thought perhaps you might like to join me as we leave the car in the shopping area and head down the road towards the caravan park

 ready for the 1st bridge which goes over the weir wall 

 I've often wanted to walk over these bridges, but just never gotten around to actually doing it. So here we are as we move onto the bridge and look down below .....


They let out a certain amount of water to head downstream to other towns depending on how much is in the weirs further upstream, or what flooding is going on ....

Here you can see the river behind me flowing downstream ......

 From here we head around the road and past the back and then the front of the RSL club 
which is just before we start over the old bridge ....  What a glorious start to the day it was looking out over the water. 
This old bridge is a real mixture as both states began building from there respective sides with designs of their own and didn't quite get the figures right ...... which meant the bridge has a bend in it where they had to make a curve to get them to meet......

I really wanted to do a 10km walk and apparently doing the 2 bridges is only around 3 ....... so you'll see we then walk along the foreshore ....... which changes from fun and games
 Funnily enough, this is where you actually find seagulls hanging around ....... yep, no salt water within a few hundred miles but they know where to find chips lol


  to a more natural space ........... and look what was hiding there ...... We get quite a lot of black swans around here as well as the pelicans and sea gulls and any number of other birds!

 Lets continue on up to the  very small yacht club where I caught a glimpse of one of the dragon boats heading out  .......... I missed getting a good photo of it, but this was docked up just beside them ...

 then up to Chinamans Island which is a very natural type habitat .
 
Unfortunately the other photo won't download ......... hmmmmm 
.......... finally tracing my steps back along the foreshore and through the main street with all the shops .... plus an extra block to finally make the 10kms I was hoping for.  I do hope you enjoyed the walk as much as I did.  Perhaps in the next couple of days my other photos from this weekend will have downloaded to allow me to post.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Jan Close- Feb Begins

The skies around here have been throwing out some magical colours with sunsets and sunrises - Pete
Sultana Grapes from our Vine.
took this one on his way to work the other day! (unfortunately, the photo just wont download - so maybe next time!).  January seems to have come and gone - its one of those months that begin with holiday and wind down mode, venturing into planning mode and it seems just as you feel ready to begin the New Year, its the last week of January ...... or the first week of February!  I'd meant to write a couple of posts by now, but time has a way of slipping through your fingers before you realise.  I've spent January working on a pattern for a cotton crocheted

market bag which I finished ....... and took to the farmers market last weekend to try it out.  I was really pleased with what I could fit into it (the slightly different shaped base), and the shoulder strap worked like a charm (no cutting into the shoulder with added weight in the bag).  I also like that its all one piece with just the one join which is crocheted anyhow giving extra strength to it.






  I prefer to work with cotton yarn during the height of summer as my fingers don't get sweaty like they do if I work with wool.  I decided to use some cotton I recently purchased and add some stash yarn to it to make one of Laura Aylors shawl patterns - mine will be a summer shawl (hopefully to use on a beach somewhere before too long!)  So this was what I worked on Friday night when I joined in with all the girls taking part in FNWF.  It's a free pattern called Touchstone and Laura now goes by Fogbound Knits if you are looking for her patterns.
 
I thought I'd finish here by showing this gum tree from our back yard (which I may have shown you
before)...... it's been slowly dying the past year although we made several attempts to save it - at one stage we thought we had as a branch of new growth came out looking healthy and strong, but then it started dying off as well.  Several breeds of birds still seem to be very fond of it, although they don't get to hide in the leaves quite like they used to be able to ........
Tomorrow is my Blog Anniversary - it will be 8 years since I started Country Fragrance ......





Sunday, January 21, 2018

Treasures

How quickly are these weeks flying by all ready! It was just last Sunday morning that as Pete and I woke up he suggested we get ready and head over early to Barooga to the swap meet that was on.  It's about an hour's drive from here and we headed along the Riverina hwy (more like a country road) enjoying the morning drive.  Plenty of kangaroos grazing in paddocks on the way over! 


 Pete has often worked over this way doing various earth working tasks including some work on this channel which we drove over. I think he was doing the rock work.  The channels work well for farmers bringing water from the Murray River to help with irrigation in both Victoria and New South Wales.

Although a smallish affair, it was very well set out on the golf course and we found some great treasures to purchase, enjoyed a coffee while we chatted to various stall holders and had a really enjoyable couple of hours before making our way back home!  The first treasure was this lovely door knocker made by an old blacksmith. I really liked it, and the fact of the being made from melted down bits and handcrafted into this piece which will be going on our front door  in Qld!

Something else I really have been wanting made for some time now is a coat rack! Pete has been doing some slabs of red gum and when I made the suggestion while we strolled around he said we would need to find some old railway pegs ......... lol, he should have known that I'd already seen a pile at one of the stalls and the fellow there was happy to part with them as 50cents each so I was happy to take the pile!  Pete can make a few spares for gifts or to sell!  He also ended up with some small wood working tools, and he found this lovely bottle which is hard to see in a photo, but it can actually only old a single stem as the inside of the bottle is shaped inwards.


Another great find were these 2 old locks that Pete set to work on once we got home and managed to get the paint off and clean them up.  They came up looking fantastic don't you think!

And it was actually Pete who encouraged me to barter on a price to bring a travelling spinners wheel back home with us .......
While he managed to find a rather large jack that apparently is needed as well .....   Neither of us could believe how many treasures we found at such wonderful prices and with such friendly people!  It was a wonderful morning! 

Here it is now, a week later ...... Pete has been fishing up near Corryong the past couple of days while I have been here at home .......... where another treasure arrived ....... yep, a bag of yarn arrived in the mail from Deramores in the UK - all cotton dk
assortments to crochet up some various items!  
Since Friday was FNSI  I decided I might work on a smaller market/ shopping bag.  Summers are hot here in Australia, so I want to work them up with cotton rather than an acrylic or wool blend.  A 10ply would be better, but unfortunately you don't get the same colour selections with 10ply as you do with 8 - so yep, I'm working with 8ply (dk).  I'm making the pattern up as I go, starting with a round section which I then added some "wings" to make it a little more elongated.  So far it seems to be doing what I'm hoping for.
Yesterday late afternoon the temperature hit 50.7 degrees celcius here!!!  It's crazy burning heat is frying some of the plants and I've been spending a lot of time trying to keep lawns and gardens watered so the place looks good when potential buyers come to look!   February is usually our worst month for dry hot weather, so I hate to think what it might be like then!  I feel very blessed to have the air conditioner working to keep it nice inside at the least!  Since I've had the water going (and the
The Male up in the gum tree keeping watch

fact that the apple trees have small very unripe apples on them), these lovely red parrots (The Australian King Parrot) have been visiting us again.  They are always here once the apples begin growing - 3 apple trees and we have yet to get 1 apple to taste!!!  We did bird net them a couple of years ago which didn't go so well being in the chook run and under a large gum tree ...........  we haven't netted since that disaster!  Its usually almost impossible to get a photo of these guys, but somehow I managed to have my phone on me and get close enough to zoom my photo camera in ......... one day I will have a small, lovely little camera that does a fantastic job of zooming in! .......... one day ....
Till next time, take care,
The female Australian King Parrot.


Sharm
PS:  And for the first time, I'm linking up with Saturdays Critters because I just discovered it!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Dreaming a Plan

Summer Sunset
It seems wherever you go in Blogland at present, there is lots of planning going on!  Something about a New Year that sets everyone in motion - and perhaps that time of settled quiet we get when Christmas is over and many are on holidays or have some extra time off from the general busyness of life!  In a blink or two, January will be over and I'm still dreaming about plans.  Things once again got put on hold as we had somebody interested in the house, but it seems they were only interested if we would take a ridiculously low price - everybody wants two bathrooms it seems these days!!!  So we are debating and deliberating on the idea of putting in a small ensuite off our bedroom which could be done with a few minor changes ............  We will be
having a few discussions this week to see how viable that is as we look at our options and where to from here!  In readiness I spent today clearing out the little nook (it was the original wardrobe area when we bought this house 8yrs ago)..... I have way too many things!!!!  The difficulty lies in needing warm woollies for the cold winter we get here, as well as summer gear for the hot dry summers!  Clothes for working at the hospital, clothes for wearing around the yard, clothes I'm trying to fit back into so don't want to get rid of them as I really do want to loose about 5 kgs which will get me into these things again!  Urggghhh!!!   Clean eating is what I need to be doing. 
For me, I'd really like to get back to growing more of our own food again.  Things around here went all askew when we decided 18months ago that we would purchase a house up in Queensland and sell our place here - hence food gardening discontinued until I bit the bullet not so long ago and put in a few vegies again! Not many, some tomatoes, a cucumber and butter beans .......
 These capsicums all grew from seeds that were the remains of a purchased capsicum a few months back - I basically just tossed the capsicum top with its seeds into the garden bed allowing it to do what it wanted (if anything), hence the reason they are all so close together!
I'd previously been given a single capsicum seedling which I had put in this pot beside the lemon verbena (I think - very yummy lemon smell to it), which had been struggling in the garden for the past few years - both seem to be doing well and the capsicum is flowering too!  I must have a look and see just what I can do with Lemon Verbena- presuming this is what it is - I may need to look at that too!!  Anyone know from this photo??  Very pretty white flowers


And more potatoes are sprouting in the pantry - so out they come to this tin in the garden which has no bottom to it - I cover them with dirt and once the green leaves begin to grow, I continue to cover them with dirt - continuing this growing/covering process all the way to the top of the bucket and then wait for them to die off which means I have a lovely crop of potatoes ready to use!  I'll be taking this rusted out tin with us when we finally move from here so I can use it in the next vegie patch!

Apart from that, I have a few other herbs, including this society garlic which had a lovely show of flowers.  Pete came home with quite a bit of garlic the other day that had been dug up from a farm he was working at!  Such a blessing when he is given produce and other goodies! 

The 3 girls left have not been laying any eggs at all since the fox attack a few weeks back which is rather disappointing!  With us trying to sell, and an interstate move in the future there wont be any new hens purchased until things are sorted out!   So I think I'll go and get my home binder out, perhaps look at getting it set up ready for when we do sell and move north so that things will be planned out just a little ..........  Dreaming the Plan!  Building the footings for what is to come in our next chapter ...........

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Farewell Holidays

Yep, it's sad to say I'm back to work this morning! I've soooo enjoyed having 3 weeks away from
Pete seeing to the grapes
the stress and red tape and nonsense and I've tried to make the most of it .......  lots of R and R; time in the garden and the sewing room, time reading, getting back into some crochet, picking up my exercise, time just sitting watching some movies and TV shows, beginning another round of 12WBT and catching up on a few letters and just pottering around at home ........ It's also been nice to have a couple of weeks at home with Pete here to!  He decided to check out how the grapes were coming along and get them netted before the birds start eating them - even though it will be a while before they are ready for eating ...... we couldn't believe how many there were!!!


 Ok, so the pottering may have been a number of "keep the house clean ready for prospective buyers" and a tad bit of sorting of various spots, but hey!  Any how, thought I'd quickly show a few of the yarny goodies I've been working on as well as some I uncovered when I sorted through the sewing room hunting for the hexie tablecloth ........  I've started a queen size crochet blanket that will be for our bed!
 And then found the one I started a few years back and had put aside ........... I guess I'll be getting back to it at some point this year since I really want to address the UFO's

Of course when you find 1 UFO, you tend to find others ....... a pair of fingerless gloves still waiting for the 2nd glove .......

and the sweater I started in Winter and put aside .....

And of course I still have 2 more cushion covers to finish crocheting for son and DIL to make the set of 6.  Since I recently saw a photo they had on FB with the other 4 in use, I best make these last 2 a priority!


Hoping to link this post up with Janine over at Rainbow Hare who is hosting Wool on Sundays (even though I'm a couple days late ......)
The animals have also been enjoying having us at home ......Cliffy (lorikeet) has been spending time getting around the back veranda area and just loves this old ironing board Pete picked up a couple of months ago from a clearance sale!   And with that I bid you good night xo