We have been so lucky to get some decent rain from storms in November. Again, it was patchy and some evenings we missed out, but we got enough to get the grass green and growing. As a farmer, there's nothing that makes me happier than seeing my cows eating green grass, I hate having to give them hay, it must be like eating dry cereal everyday and then suddenly the salad bar arrives (to reference Joel Salatin!).
In one particular storm we lost power from Saturday night through to Monday morning. This is the longest we have been without electricity since we bought our generator a few years ago. Usually the power comes back on right after we connect all the extension cords, but this time we were running all four freezers and fridge off the generator. I know people say that the freezer is ok for 24-48 hours, but it was HOT, like 37degC and things were starting to defrost. It was a good kind of power outage in that town had their power restored early on, so we could still buy fuel and ice. I going to write more about what we learnt and improvements to our storm preps, but here's what I've written about it before.
I don't feel like I've been cooking anything exciting lately. We've really just been working through our freezers - beef, lamb, bacon and roosters! And eating veges from the garden (although the carrots and mushrooms and potatoes in this photos were all form the supermarket, there is usually something from the garden in every meal).
|A typical meal|
|The second bee hive before we lost them|
The rain has been enough to get our perennial pasture growing really well and we are now wishing we planted more than 10 acres, but that is a job for this summer, to finish the rest of our cultivation area. The advantages: the pasture grows as soon as the rain comes, does not have to be replanted (no more ploughing!) and is safe for the cattle to eat right away (unlike forage sorghum with its prussic acid), it can be made into hay or fed off.
|so many eggs!|
|one of our roosters|
|Molly moo cow|
|the cows mowing (moo-ing) the house yard|
The house, otherwise known as the never-ending project! I feel its time to reflect on what we have achieved in the last 12 months because sometimes it feels like we are not getting anywhere.
- Old red roof replaced (including rafters) with new colourbond paperbark roof
- Two bedrooms and hallway sanded, washed, gap-filled, primed and painted in Tapestry Beige (including ceilings)
- All lino removed from bedrooms, hall, side room, kitchen and bathroom
- Asbestos removed from side room and replaced with Easy VJ
- Bathroom completed gutted and ready for tiling and new fittings - new bathroom layout planned
- Kitchen completely gutted including asbestos in pantry, walls and ceiling sanded, ready to wash and paint
- Multiple trips to the dump with everything we've removed (including disposing of the asbestos correctly)
- 12 x 15 m shed ordered, to be built in February, shed location cleared and pegged out
Here's what I wrote last time I reflected on this principle. This is my favourite principle. I shouldn't have favourites, they are all equal principles, but for some reason this one really stands out to me. I think its just the easiest one to understand and to practice daily. It goes right through from making a decision to purchase something (do I really need it? Can I get it second-hand? Can I borrow one? If I buy one, can I avoid packaging waste? Can I get one that will last for a long time?), to using and finally disposing of a product and packaging. I know my worm farm is the MOST useful way to avoid waste, the worms will eat anything organic (i.e. anything that was once living, including paper, all kitchen scraps and things like chicken feathers and grass clippings) and they will produce useful "worm wee" and compost. And they breed prolificly, so there is always spare worms to give to the chickens or to someone else setting up a worm farm (if you're in the South Burnett and want worms, I always have spare).
Here's a new blog to check out this month: Crooked blue cottage . I know I have a heap of new followers on my sidebar but I can't open any profiles, I don't know if I broke something or if its a problems with "Google Friend Connect". If you are new, please please leave a comment and tell me where I can find you if you have a blog, I'd love to connect. I put out a call on the eight acres Facebook page to ask where people are from, and it was lovely to read all the response and check out new blogs and pages.
|soap for sale!|
I personally don't really do much for Christmas, we don't decorate the house or give presents. I have been pinning simple and frugal Christmas ideas on my Pinterest board. I think it can be a really stressful time for people if you feel the pressure to spend a lot of money or prepare a massive feast and it really doesn't have to be like that if you make the decision to keep it simple.
How was November at your place? What are you planning for December? Are you going to get time for a break?