Winter arrives….

We have had some beautiful days but also some cold ones and the nights are leaving hard frosts on the ground. Roger has been bringing home more pea-straw for the garden. We are very fortunate to get that free from the farm he works at – we get the older stuff from the previous year. I hate to think how many large bales have gone on our garden over the years but the results have been great. When we first dug up our lawn it was just dry, stony old river bed.

We got two great buys last week, the best would be a load of paint. Roger got this on an auction for $7…I guess many others wouldn’t bother because there was clearly alot of old stuff that would need to be taken to a chemical dump (lead based or useless). But he could see there was also new. Given we need more paint for other jobs around the house and outside he took a gamble.Image

We ended up with over 40 litres of good paint, around 10 litres of white enamel, 8 litres of brown decking and fencing paint we needed (I just bought a 2 litre pot just to cover the porch and it cost over $40) Other neutral paints and varnishes which will be handy and around 3 litres of clear varnish for my next attempts at decoupage. We were rapt. But we got more! Roger only had a $10 note and told the guy to keep the change, but the guy rushed off and got these for him. 2 bottles of wine and 4 jars of Pickled Red Onions. His family own a 6 family member production plant and these were from there. We felt like we had been paid to take this paint away!Image

One wine bottle is discreetly parked behind the other here because we opened it straight away 🙂 🙂

And I bought this lovely rug for $15

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 We got our first taste of our homegrown honey and it is utterly gorgeous. The bees need the honey that’s there for over wintering but we sneaked a tiny bit.

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We were just discussing last week how we could harvest it ourselves when I came across this post from lizard100 on the home made equipment they created for the job…we will be trying this.

The bees and butterflies are enjoying our Buddleia tree outside our lounge window. This needs a severe pruning this year after it’s flowered.

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You would think with all the preserving I do I could manage Quince Paste but this apparently is not so. Last year I had it cooking for forever only to burn it. This time I made crockpot paste but it didn’t set firm and had to be potted into jars for use as a spreadble paste. While divine it’s not quite what it should be.

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 Remember this? I showed it when I bought it for $5, I wanted to repaint it.

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I have been working on it the last two weeks and was having trouble finding knobs. One very kind soul, another blogger who lives on the other side of the world! offered to send me some.

Lois from Simply Free, thank you xx

I will show it when finished.

Winters arrived…’her indoors’ is staying indoors, or trying to.

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I detest the cold weather so there’s very little gardening going on here. The big garden is just mush and the frost seems to settle and never leave. We are not at close to the mountain as it looks 🙂 This was done with the zoom. Still, cold enough for me to be spending little time out there.

This morning I picked the last from the big garden, this was it:Image

Swept up more fallen leaves and put them on the wintering garden:Image

And had a little help from my friends in spreading them 🙂

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This is not helping, they found their way upstairs into the only bit of garden we have growing at present. In the background is the nearly finished glasshouse my husband just built from recycled windows and doors. It still needs to be painted, ok for $22 🙂

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So because I don’t find gardening in the cold and wet very pleasant I am inside more often than not, taking the time to do other things I enjoy. However I have been getting cabin fever so last week returned to work as a casual, just occasional evenings – once or twice a week maybe. This is in a mental health respite house and it’s nice to be back. I was doing community when I left work but this is where I worked before then.

And today in the post I received kefir grains from the very awesome Narf (thank you!) and I shall be organising those for yogurt etc, it sounds an interesting process.

I can’t wait for spring already and we are just going in to winter, ooohh it’ll be a long one!!