Monday, October 31, 2011

With Spring Comes Work!

As much as I have been sooo looking forward to spring, I had forgotten that it also brings more work.  Have you ever noticed that when you open the windows to let the air and light in after a cold winter that when you look around there seems to be lots of cleaning to be done.  Yes you have been doing your normal weekly cleaning jobs, but now with that spring light coming through the window that cupboard door seems to be a dirty shade of cream, there are thousands of finger (and lip  - Kie was giving her self kisses lol) prints on the mirror, and lets not even mention the cob webs.  So I have had these things staring at me all week this week but with the boys bedrooms still being built and everything they own being stashed throughout the house I hadn't had a chance.  Well there rooms are 90% done (just the bricking in of the windows on the outside to be done now) so we moved them in.  That was a job seriously I think they have too many toys and little bitsy ones at that.

With Spring Cleaning in mind I thought it was about time to share with you the Jiff Cleaner recipe I use.  I use it to clean all the sinks, bath, vanity areas and the toilets.  We are on a bio cycle for sewage here and they work on bacterial breakdown so we cant use most chemicals or any thing with bleach or antibacterials.  This works wonders and is actually the only thing that touches the build up of the dam water scale that gets on the loo.  I was using it when we lived in the suburbs mainly cause it didn't have harsh chemicals and was cheap but now its a way of life. Give it a go.

Jiff Type Cleaner
1/2 cup liquid soap (I use my home made one)
1/4 Bi-carb Soda

mix soap and bi-carb till a thick liquidy paste.
Add small amount of water to smooth consistency (personal taste.)
This does store, sometimes it may separate but just give it a shake.

So with the boys mess back in their rooms, I got a bee in my bonnet today and couldn't stand it any longer so I started those spring cleaning jobs with the jobs I had to do today.  It was the kids bathroom, floors and Laundry today.  There is definitely more to come this week including a lot of glass sliding doors.

Ian also finally bought me some soil for the veggie patch on Sunday so we have loaded that in and there are 3 more garden beds ready for my seedlings.  I also rounded up all the posts and plant protectors I could find on the property and started laying them out in what will be the herb garden.  We have and area between the house and the veggie patch that is a decent size area and at the moment just looks weedy and messy.  I cant really plant anything there because it is just all that horrible foundation rock that they use when they build the house and it would cost a fortune to get it dug out and soil brought in plus really do I want to be digging up that close to the house?  so rather than just forever be annoyed with this area I have rounded up anything that looks like it will hold soil and will be filling them with herbs.  Another tonne of soil and I should be ready to plant lots of herbs yay!

Whilst we were all out working on the garden I brought our baby chicks out for their first frolic in the sun, they had a ball.  The ducks also finally realised that the blue tarp in front of the boys room isn't actually water and found their pond.  (Did I tell you that Donald's girl friend Daisy had arrived).  they aren't quiet eat out of your hands ducks yet but they love to hang around the front of the house and if you haven't been out to chat to them for a while they start peaking through the windows  and tapping for you if they see you.

OK so my little sis Dee says to me (on-line chat) I need to learn how to crochet hair clips.  so the hunt for some patterns and some playing around with them ensued.  Here is the results (excuse the hot pink but when doing testers I use up the bitsy yarn and if it works I have little girls who love pink lol)  Have a go at them the are a great way to use up little bits of left over yarn  and any princesses in your life will love you.  You can find the patterns here and here and the other one is in my head lol.  Well that about sums up this last week.

So catchya later

Monday, October 24, 2011

The sun was finally shinning!

Well we spent a glorious weekend outside, for once it wasnt raining or drizzling or just plain wet.  I got some planting in the veggie patch done finally.  2 types of cabbage (one purple), 6 types of Lettuce, Rocket and Coloured Silverbeet, so thats the Brassica bed planted.  All of these I have grown from seeds in the little hot houses I bought earlier this week.  I am now waiting on more soil to get the Tomatos, chillis and eggplants going.

Sunday, Ian let me play with his new toy,  a ride on mower.  I did the veggie garden where the grass was upto my waist in some places,  I couldnt see the fruit trees bordering the garden for all the grass.   It wasnt as easy as I thought it would be.  definatly made to be used on flat open spaces,  not for swerving around fruit trees and garden beds.  Got the job done though, now it looks much better, and I can even see that all my new fruit trees are  coming along nicely with lots of new foliage.  My Fig tree even has a little fig on it!

It was lovely to see the kids out playing in the sunshine again,  all of them at some point came and helped in the veggie patch too.  Hide and seek is a whole new exciting game on 15 acres but alas there is always one who doesn't get found and gets cross when they have sat in their little hidie spot for too long.  I turned my back on the ride on mower for 2 seconds and Ian had it back and  was mowing every flat spot around the house!  There were animals running everywhere trying to get away.  We let the ducks out for a wander for the first time after clipping a wing each.  they had a ball checking out their new home. The kids thought this was a seriously mean thing to do especially when I told them that it was to stop them being naughty and flying away and that I would consider removing body parts of any naughty children.

Today of course the drizzle was back so spent the day inside pottering around.  For tea tonight I made meatloaf and thought it was about time I shared the recipe.  its one of my goto recipes for a hearty but quickish meal and its great for using up little bits of  veggies that are hanging around in the back of the fridge.

Cauliflower, Peas, Bread Crumbs, Celery, Onion, Carrot
Dell's Meatloaf
  • 500gms mince
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 carrot grated
  • 1 1/2 cup grated or finely chopped veggies (eg zuccini, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, peas)
  • 2 tb sp tomato paste
  • 2 tb sp mixed dry herbs
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1/4 cup bbq sauce (I use a home made one but bought will do)


  • preheat oven to 180 degrees, line tray with alfoil/baking paper
  • mix mince, bread crumbs, onion carrot, Veggies tomato paste, dry herbs, and egg together in a bowl, mix well with hands
  • shape into a 10 x 18 cm rectangle and place on tray
  • bake until firm to touch (30 mins approx)
  • spoon over bbq sauce and bake for a further 10 mins til golden glazed
  • remove from oven stand for 5 mins
  • serve with veggies or salad. 
NB  this is fairly mild flavour (for my kids) but I add pepper sauce or any other spicy sauce when making it for us big kids.

I hope you will try it and enjoy it like we do.

Well I am off to do some homework with the kids

Catch ya later.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Spring Is Here Finally!

So life has been a bit busy around here. I set my incubator going with some eggs (12 ea of Barnevelders, Sussex and mixed)  we ended up with 16 chicks, not to shabby for our first run especially considering with the novelty factor I kept peaking in when I wasn't supposed to.  The chicks are now in their brooder and are about 10 days old.  The incubator has been reset with just mixed eggs.  Aren't they cute.

As with life on farmlet there is always life and death, this is a good thing for the kids to experience.  We unfortunately lost one of our sheep.  Hope was one of the first 2 Border Leicesters we bought onto the property,  she had a girl last year (Faith)and twins this year (Tramp and Lady)  she was also a great wet nurse for one of Chastity's twin girls which she rejected.  It was very sudden,  she was fine Monday afternoon and by Wednesday midday was down with an exploded udder with gang-green from mastitis and died about 6.00pm.  (warning icky photos)

We also have a new member to the family with a friend arriving tomorrow.  This is Donald and tomorrow Daisy will arrive.  They will be pets ( I know more pets lol) but further down the tract I hope to have some Indian Runner Ducks for breeding.

OK so that does the farm.  We  had a holiday over on the Yorke Peninsula with the Johnson's and we took the kids to the Minlaton Show.  The kids had a fantastic time and it was great for mum to spend some time with Aunty Dee.  The kids started back at school this week after 2 weeks of holidays (2 weeks really doesn't seem like enough).  They had swimming school for the primary school kids and My big High School girl did her first mentor teaching this week.  She as been doing so well (3 A+'s) that the home economics teachers have asked her to be a mentor teacher for this terms master classes.  She is so excited and it has given her such a confidence boost and anything that excites a child about school has to be good in my book.

My knitting and crocheting has been an absolute disgrace and we wont even talk about the spinning and dying.  I have so many projects on the go.  I have decided that I really shouldn't start anything else until I finish something in this list.  lets see I am currently knitting: A handspun jumper for Ian, a play jumper for David, a skirt for Akielah, a  cardie for Kenishia, 2 boleros for me, socks for David, and the forever ongoing Civil war Shawl for fun.  Then there is the endless dishcloths I am crocheting and I have started a table cloth too cause I am just sick of the brown one we have and I cant find another one big enough that I like.  Now the weather is finally getting to be nice I am hoping to spend some time out in the fresh air working my way through this list.

The garden is still a work in progress,  I have lots of seedlings I am hoping to plant this weekend (Lord and rain permitting).  I also have 5 more fruit trees still waiting to go in.

I also have a great new app for my phone.  Youversion is a bible and devotions app that has lots of different versions of the bible (even talking ones) and lots of devotions too, I can flag and mark verses for future reference too.  I have been trying to make this part of my daily routine and so far so good.  Even got to put some of the verses into action and use them in daily life with the kids.   The app can be pretty much used for any Internet type phone,  go have a look here, its free I highly recommend it.

I hope you like the new look.

Well that's it from me today, catch you later