Tuesday, August 30, 2011

On early morning foal patrol

I raced out to see if we had any foals, cold about 2degrees and there was a bit of low lying cloud and the sun just coming up. Raced back in to get the camera and these were the shots I managed to get.
There were no new foals.
The last photo is of the native dendrobium hybrid which is flowering like carzy in the sun room and perfuming the whole house. Lovely.

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Monday, August 29, 2011

This and that

A small part of something I have been working on for a quilt swap. I wont put the whole thing up until a later date but i had a bit of fun with this. The background is a piece of rusted fabric.
Next down the new boy on the block, the Welsh Section B colt Imperial Aden who we hope will do good things for the stud.
Then Tilly's filly who was born yesterday morning, She is part Welsh and Riding pony and is a lovely elegant little thing.
Finally the red cedar by the house has dropped all tis leaves, it does it now as it is an Australian rain forrest tree, seems strange but it will be in full leaf quite quickly.
I love the bare branches against a cloudy sky.
It is raining at the moment, just as well I left the sheets on the line as other wise I was going to have to water pots, I thought I had a good chance of a nice shower or two.
I seem to be plodding along well with this polymalga thing, after a visit to my doctor today it seems that all is going more or less as he expected and I should not get too thingy about reducing the cortisone too quickly. The trouble is it really is hard to tell wether it is my normal arthritis or the disease and now I get confused about what is which!
Enough of that, I am having fun sketching and doing some nice embroidery, keeping busy although I need to get back into the garden or it will be so over run with growing things I wont be able to get out of the back door to the car. Perhaps I will invest in a small machette.

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Saturday, August 27, 2011

Clouds and peacocks

This morning as I was driving back from the market the clouds were appearing over the valley. It started off as a cold and almost clear morning, but as the day has progressed the clouds have got more, and it is cold.
I have been out in the garden cutting back some shrubs and my fingers are burning with the cold, a nd the effort (and probably arthritis as well!) I always love the light and shadow and play on the clouds as they come over the valley. Just wish I could paint them.
The peacocks were together waiting to be fed the other evening so a slightly strange photo but one I took more for the textures and colours than anything else.
Do have a look at my daughter Sarah's blog, it is on my side bar. She is a wonderful photographer (with a fantastic camera and lenses) and gives a different insight into life on the farm to mine, I suppose it is that generation down thing.
I am working on a small art quilt for a swap, its not finished but at least it is under way. I am not a quilter and I probably make them in a different way, I like to fuse and use had stitch and not have too many colour distractions. I think it will be alright.

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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Whales in the Bay

This morning we had to collect and take and generally fiddle with John's new computer and as it wasnt ready we went for a walk over at Pt Elliott and I was just saying that we hadnt seen any whales this season when wow! There was a puff of water and then there were two or three travelling not terribly far from the path around the bay.
So I have finally seen my whales for the season.
On the first part of the walk these freesias were making a brave show, we have lots of these which have naturalised all along the older parts of the peninsula.
As you can see from the photos it was a stunning time for a walk, the seas were looking as blue as blue and the sun was shining on our backs. One of those days you are so pleased to be alive, and able to walk and enjoy it all.
Back here I am trying to tidy up, I get stuck into something and then there is a mess and sometimes it takes me longer to get it all sorted than I had hoped. Still you can now actually get at the computer monitor without falling into a heap of bagsof assorted 'stuff I might use'!!

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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Around the farm

We had a new baby yesterday, I wasnt able to use the computer as John has mine and I couldnt get to it. I will be glad when his new one comes home.
So top picture is of our new live baby, a colt but we dont mind as his brother is stunning.
Millie came out for her lesson on old Harriet, as you can see the dogs get into the act as well. The dogs are all border collies, just different colours. Sarah is very good with small children and had her lifting saddle at nearly every step, although Millie was pretty tired as she had been to a gymkhana on Sunday (and won some ribbons) and then her father came in late from Perth the night before as well as a day at 'school' so she did well to do half an hour.
I walked a bit late so some of the light is a bit odd, but the self sown plum at the bottom of the orchard is looking stunning, wont last long but I think I caught it at just the right moment.
Finally a shot of some of the cows waiting to be milked, after all we are a dairy farm so I should show an end of the milking shed and a few of the cows.
I have been having such fun with the 5 day class I did with Carla Sonheim, and there will be a few photos of my junk mail book on my other blog (see the side bar). I couldnt scan the complete pages unfortunately.
I have enough made up pages to have fun and make another one.
A totally beautiful day, almost too warm, after all this is only August, I had to water a few of the outside pots. I love Spring but I hate the thought of a long hot dry summer.

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Monday, August 22, 2011


John and I had a long tiring and very enjoyable day yesterday as members of the Waterhouse Clubs expedition to Red Creek near Moculta at the back of the Barossa Valley. the Waterhouse Club is a fund raising and expediton arm of the Adelaide museum and these days are usually headed up by some one very knowledgeble in their field. This was one to see the variety of rock, old, very old volcanic signs and some very enigmatic worm cast type fossils.
We left at 7 am to get there a bit before 10 am going through the Adelaide hills, stunning scenery and all the prunus in the small towns was out and at its best. We had never gone on part of this road before, some though was very familiar to me as we have to go through part of it to get to some of the horse Shows.
After every one had arrived we headed off up and over the bony hills and down almost to the Murray River plains but stopped to walk up what they know as Red Creek, wombat holes and yam daisies and huge river red gums and a pleasant walk for a while until we got to the creek which I found a bit difficult to negotiate but that was of course where all the geological bits were. I didnt make it to the fossils as I knew I had done an awful lot of walking over 3 hours and that is far more than I have done for ages so I sat and sketched (on my other blog), I did see photos later.
We headed back for a very late and delicious lunch and I dropped in to see another SALA exhibition in the hall over the road, actually quite good, better than a lot I had seen.
We did take a small wrong turn which gave me the opportunity to take a photo of the lovely Lutheran Church in Eden Valley, this area was all settled by the German settlers fleeing religious persecution early in the 1800 and the towns all have Lutheran churches and the roads have lots of German names and they started the wineries in the area. Lots of stone walls, all hand made when labor was cheap and land needed to be cleared.
We couldnt go on to the Copper mine the others were heading for as we had an over 2 hour drive home. and the sunset is what greeted us as we headed into the valley.
Double click on the mosaic to see the photos better.
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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Damp morning at the farmes Market

It was grey and overcast and drizzly this morning when I went into the farmers market at Victor. I didnt need much as we are not home a lot in the next few days.
We lost our first foal yesterday morning, it didnt get out of the bag, always a possibility and I always think there is an underlying problem when that happens, I also think it was breach. Part of farming and raising any sort of animal. One has to get used to it and hope all is well next time.
I am rather fed up with women in particular who have this great mother hood thing about animals, there is a huge thing on at the moment about live animal exports here and those who seem to get most upset are city mothers with no idea of looking after an animal, they are lucky if they have one child and no dog or kitten. A good mouse plague would soon fix their ideas!
Farmers dont like cruelty to their animals, but we have to be pragmatic about it, things sometimes happen beyond our control, and here in this huge country, live animal exports, be they cattle or sheep are part of our economy. A very important part of our income is selling dairy heifers overseas, and at the prices they pay they certainly get looked after. We wouldnt survive if we didnt have that trade as we certainly dont get paid enough for our milk. Sometimes I think Auistralians want farmers to go broke, and only import all their food.
Enough of my rant.
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Thursday, August 18, 2011

A feather for Jude

This feather I embroidered on a piece of eco dye ed silk on a piece of blanket will be winging its way to Jude Hill tomorrow, I hope. I loved doing it.
A few aches and pains this morning, not sure if its because I have once more lowered the dose of cortisone but it has eased by the afternoon, but I decided to take things a bit more slowly today so have been painting and drawing stuff for my on line class with Carla Sonheim and reading my book.
The dogs and chooks are fed, now to organise our dinner, baked pork shops and I will use some of the savoy cabbage I bought the other week and havent had time to paint.
Drizzle and showers all day, a nice day to sit by the fire and read.
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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wandering yesterday

W and I had organised to have a bit of a wander around the SALA exhibits and I especially wanted to go up to Stirling, a village in the Adelaide Hills to see a book exhibition that was on, only small but I loved it and the bookshop is a lovely 'proper' bookshop called Matilda's.
The first photo is of the main street, hellebores were blooming every where, and I bought in a lovely fruit shop a beautiful darl one so I am pleased. The camellia was on the other side of the road next to a bank ATM. Cold and damp and with the threat of gales which thank heaven held off until the evening, so did most of the rain.
We found a good coffee shop and some pretty woeful other exhibitors who painted badly on the whole and had an over inflated idea of their worth.
So from there we back tracked down to the Mclaren Vale area and the third photo is of the view from Penny's Hill winery where there was a really good exhibition of Stavros Pippos photographs, I am not normally madly keen on photos but these were fantastic. After being frustrated by the fact that some venues were not open when they said they would be, or were not because it was Wednesday, we finally made it up to Dog Ridge Winery where these wonderful bird paintings of Jen Wrights were, and all very affordably priced.
So an enjoyable wet day spent with lots of chat and things to talk about.
I drove and got home tired but that really didnt matter.
Back in the land of the living!

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Monday, August 15, 2011

Sunday Mosaic

We had a lovely day yesterday, it was a beautiful day, the sun was out and we decided to have a bit of time to ourselves.
We walked over at Pt Elliott, no whales that we could see or seals for that matter but the Yam daisies were out and so was the wild clematis.
Then we headed for Willunga and McLaren Vale and visited a couple of galleries and had a quick lunch at Red Poles after seeing their bird exhibition, made me feel a bit enthusiastic about drawing more birds. So nice to sit out in the sun with a bowl of soup and some coffee.
We headed home and caught up with Millie and Tab, Millie had just had a riding lesson with Sarah and was full of it. Tab's face looks worse than when I last saw it but it is to be expected.
The blue wrens were having a big barney by the back door and I tried to take photos, I caught one just as it was about to fly off, she looks very odd! They are so quick and I couldnt get the blue male at all.
My pansies in the pot by the back door are looking lovely, but I have cheated, they are still in their pots from the nursery and just packed into the hanging basket.
Today is wet and damp, I had a bd night last night not sure why, but have done all the indoor chores and am now basting my travellers blanket together, this is my on line class with Dijanne Cevaal.
I have also been doing some scribbly birds on a small book that is going together, very scribbly but fun to do. Listening to Cat Stephens on a disk John has downloaded from i tunes, takes me back to our first visit to London in the early 70's. I have a very odd collection Bryn Terfel is another of my favorites as well as good old Neil Diamond!! Showing my age here but some of these I actually saw in concert, and very different it was back then too.
Click the mosaic twice and you should see it better.
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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Marketing and Jude's feather project.

This morning when I went into the farmerws market Francesco had this wonderful crinkly savoy cabbage. I had to have it with some of the other things because it looks so eminently painable, wether I will be able to or not I dont know but at the moment it is taking pride of place as a kitchen ornament.
The lovely old fashioned freesias are just starting to flower too, they have naturalised in some places around here but I have terrible trouble just getting a few to stay with me. They smell divine.
I am having a go at Jude Hill's feather project, if you go to my side bar you can click and go to her blog and from there there is something on one of her side bars, I am hopeless at getting things onto my blog so now dont try, but this is a nice project she is hoping to get lots and put them together for needy children. These are my practice feathers, so nice to just pick up and play with.
I am also dyeing some cloth today, I am not a dye person at all except for the eco dyeing but as this is cotton I need something that will dye that, so I hope I have followed all the instructions and that it will work, one of the colours isnt quite what I had in mind!
I am not sure if I have guests tonight or not but the house is now dusted and vacuumed, and I am about to go and make a casserole in case they arrive late and need to be fed.
Whoops one of my little angels landed on this blog, they should be on my other one, if you want to know what they are doing go to my other blog (see side bar!)
Then I will sit quietly for a while and possibly read my book.
John is fishing but tomorrow I hope to go and see a bit around the place.
Have a lovely week end.

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Friday, August 12, 2011

Skye Cellars and Auldana winery

Not sure if this heading is absolutely correct but I spent yesterday in Adelaide with P who amongst a lot of other things took me up here and we were shown through the old cellars that were cut into the hill. This is where those lovely old baskets are and the cog is where bottles were taken down in baskets to be stored in the hollowed out caves, which are now rented out for people to put their own bottles in.
Absolutely fascinating as this goes back to John's forbears who started all of this in the mid 1800's.
I had never been here before, remember I am not a city person.
We had a lovely but tiring day, we found a wonderful glass studio too but I will do that one tomorrow.
We have a festival on called SALA South Australian living artists and this month there are a lot of studios and galleries open and you can wander around visiting them. I have even discovered that an aunt of mine is included, so I hope we have some time to look over the week end.
Bit tired today, well suddenly guests for tomorrow night, I think, coming from interstate to collect the little mare we are leasing them.
Better go and make sure the spare room is ready!
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