Monday, March 11, 2013

Exploring an island.

Well I am back after a very long break, I have missed keeping a record of our days. I like to be able to look back to see the children grow, to remember the normal little every day parts of our life at present which do change and the memories of them do fade. So Im starting again.

Goat Island

It seemed to some of the children that Goat Island was misnamed as when we arrived yesterday it was neither an island nor were there any goats. However it was a wonderful place to explore, and imagine and daydream . 
 With the tide at it's lowest we could walk on dry ground all the way out and thankfully all the way back too.

Still the the trek out was rather troublesome for some of our explorers!

You can imagine the excitement when the girls discovered a cave. Who need the famous five?
The contrast of colours was stunning yesterday, the sky was a cloudless blue and the lichen on the rocks such a deep orange.

 The children led the way bushbashing through tangled branches and squeezing though small tunnels, all very exciting for those who could simply bend to make their way through.
 But for the largest party members it was a little more difficult even on hands and knees. 
 I loved watching the children's excitement, pure joy on their faces. 
 Every high point was climbed, naturally. We let the boys run ahead at the beginning which cut out the competition, keeping things peaceful. 
This summer has been so lovely weather wise we haven't been out and about as much as I would have liked but days like this one will be remembered. 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Enjoying Spring.

We've had a true spring here with the weather jumping between wonderful sunshiny warm days to days with snow falling and settling on the mountain while we huddled around the cosy fire which we kept  burning all day. Right now we've enjoyed a string of the lovely mild blue kind. The children and I have loved soaking up the sun's warmth, in fact we even called school off one day just to lap up the wonderful weather and concentrate on lots of spring garden jobs.
Serena showed the boys how to whistle through grass, that made for good entertainment after our picnic lunch.

James tried with all his might again and agin but still no success, maybe next year.
Yesterday poor little James must have been totally worn out, Serena found him sleeping like this and kindly placed a pillow under his head, he slept for a couple of hours in the sun. Probably dreaming of what he's going to make with the wood and saw, maybe another sword? 
This week we are expecting some new additions to our mini farm, some pure breed day old chicks and some fertile duck eggs to put under our two ducks who are both sitting on one nest. We had the same shared mothering last year, the ducklings were very well protected which is just as well as we do have a few hungry crows hanging about. 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Picnicking with Peacocks and other activities.

We celebrated Joshua's birthday with a picnic at the Cataract  Gorge with Zac and Nina recently. The forecast was for afternoon rain and we were so fortunate to be driving out when those rains began to fall. We were hoping to see the peacocks show their splendour to their mates but we missed that, however they did come up to share our picnic and eat from the children's hands, such amazing beauty!

Last Sunday we made the decision to take a hastily thrown together picnic lunch to the Arboretum after Church, not realising they were having a type of fair that day. The children planted some trees along the creek which we will visit over the years. 

 These two were so cute in their planting, soil went everywhere including in their hair! Thomas had to be pulled out of the whole more than once.
Josh is planting a Mountain Pepper. 
 One day I'm going to make things like this.
And like this.

We have also celebrated my Nan's 96th birthday with all the family, such a great time to get together with cousins I never see anymore and to meet their spouses and children. We made the stop at the beach before driving home and of course the little ones got soaked. But had such fun climbing over rocks, paddling in pools and even jumping waves.
Most of the little ones were herded  onto the balcony for a photo, unfortunately they were herded to the wrong end and this is the best photo we got.
The children loved the pool and spa most of all. 

Sunday, August 21, 2011

A few things I have been enjoying lately.

I haven't spent much time reading lately but I have borrowed all of these books from the library and have enjoyed the little time I've spent with each. Practical Self-Sufficiency is on my wish list as is the Real Food Companion and I'll be borrowing the Charcuterie again for sure but would like to find a book that doesn't depend on Nitrites. I'm keen to make the Spanish Chorizo, Hungarian Salami and air-dried Ham.

 A Sunday picnic is always nice but especially when the sun finally shines through after days (or is it weeks) of rain. Joshua, Serena and friend also completed the 40 hour famine over the weekend choosing to sleep in the cubby to take the hardship up a notch. They did very well, it's nice to see their compassion for those whose lives are not as easy as their own,
 This little boy is amazing, here he is on his way home from hospital, he'd spent the night there after dropping a 5kg weight on his big toe which smashed it. The toe was really smashed and was the most unpleasant sight I've seen in my children's injuries. He shed a few tears when his brother and sister panicked at the sight of it and that was it no more tears. He is so tough. He is not likely to go into the medical field, he has a very low opinion of all hospital staff and wasn't afraid to let everyone in the building know it. 

 Spelling tests are fun too, especially when there is a little brotherly, sisterly competition. 
 We have enjoyed another birthday recently as Thomas turned two. We managed to stick to GAPS legal food quite easily this time, oh except for some cocoa.
 This train set has been a real hit, I love watching all the children enjoying it together, really it was Thomas's birthday present but he doesn't mind sharing. 
 Aunties and sisters are such a blessing, especially this one.
And I've been enjoying my new almost complete kitchen, it is taking rather a long time to finish, I'm hoping this week that will happen. 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Being nine.

 These two friends share a birthday and they recently turned nine. I had a delightful morning watching them together, discussing like old ladies how time flies.
 These three also discussed how they look forward to having their own children one day. When I asked them what it was about having children they looked forward to they all said playing with them and one said sending them to school! While another looked horrified and exclaimed she would definitely be homeschooling her children. The other shot back with, "Oh no it's way too much work."!!!
 Thankfully they are not too grown up yet to enjoy crazy dress ups.
 Gracie choose a GAPS friendly lemon meringue pie as her birthday cake which turned out well despite being left in the oven too long.
 They all love party poppers on their birthdays ...except usually the youngest who find the noise way too scary.
 We gave her this lovely book which tells the story of a little girl who was taught to stitch a decorative bread cloth by her Grandmother. The book came with all that was needed for Gracie to make her own cloth.
 The rest of the family went out one afternoon and we took the opportunity to read finish the book and begin the project.
It was such a lovely time and Gracie learnt up the needed stitch very well and has done an excellent job on her cloth. Now she is hemming it up and when it's complete I'll post a photo. I love to see her sitting her self down with her needle work and she loves creating all sorts of items as gifts or to put to use herself. Delightful.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Homemade chocolate.

The chocolate eggs I made at Easter were pretty poor, dull with honey crystals through them. They helped ease my need for chocolate but certainly didn't have good mouth feel. So it was time to try again and this is what I ended up with, nice shiny chocolate with reasonable mouth feel. I added roasted almonds as it was a little sweeter than I like, the honey flavour was there but wasn't too strong.

Thomas enjoyed helping with the clean up, as did all the other children.

Notice the chocolate drip on the chin! He is busy playing a Nancy Drew computer games, they love those games.

Chocolatey kisses.

Poor James was running a very high temp so missed the pleasure of clean up with the others.

This one would have eaten the lot in one sitting I'm sure. I think I may need to make the next batch when they are all sleeping and hide it away! Sure doesn't last long.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

No Longer a Teenager.

My first born turned 20 this week, no longer a teenager, I think he is a little reluctant to leave those years behind him but I try to assure him life really gets richer as the years roll by. We all love it when he (well now when they) come to visit, there is always so much excitement in the house as everyone waits the arrival of biggest brother and his lovely girlfriend.

James has drawn some stars for Zac.

 This game was never finished as no one could remember how to play, we must download some instructions.
 James doing his first ever sewing.
 Daniel making a special gift for someone he loves and misses.
 I love to see them getting on so well, I wonder just how tall she will get.
 Zac is holding his gift from Serena, rosemary and thyme potted in boots and Nina is holding some lacto fermented radishes. 

We enjoyed a quiet afternoon together just enjoying each others company. A game of Mousetrap was started, and some stitching done. One brother spent the day on the couch most disappointed with himself for being unwell on the day his brothers comes to celebrate his birthday with us. But all in all it was a lovely afternoon. I'm very much looking forward to having all of me children together in a couple of weeks.