a house with a view and a plover

We have had some lovely spring rain and mild temperatures this year. Our garden has blossomed and we have enjoyed some plants flowering for the first time in the five years since we made our tree change.

The following photos are of the bauhinia shrubs ( https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bauhinia ) that I thought no longer had the will to live a few short weeks ago. They survive against the odds in the worst conditions, very shallow shaley soil on a stoney ridge.

 

And this is the view that I have from our living areas. The plover and its nest is circled in red.

 

 

 

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it is all about balance

Out and about today, so we lunched at an Organic Café. They were so organic that I was worried that they might check that I was wearing underwear made from natural fibres before they served me. I wasn’t so, thank goodness they didn’t.

We both settled for the totally vegetarian salad.

salad .jpg

Hence dinner at home was this:

hot dog

Augie ate his so fast, I couldn’t get a snap – even after I gifted him a second sausage!

augie eats

this isn’t in the play book

tea multiple

I have a summer cold. This isn’t suppose to happen in my new happy ever after life. The only eucalyptus I can smell in on my tissues (Kleenex). It’s Mr FD’s fault. He has a chest infection.

To be fair, Petite Fille brought the virus into their home, and she shared it with her father and mother, and then with me, but I am quite sure that Petite Fille’s father passed the virus to Mr FD and then he incubated a more virulent version. After a night or six of coughing he passed his new improved germ cocktail to me. I am an innocent victim. Again.

Poor little Petit Garcon also has the cough, which is unfair when one is only 4 months old. Did I tell you that I have the most perfect little Flamingo Dancer grandson, ever? I do. Babies should be given germ protection for their first year because they just don’t understand. Life is cruel.

The summer weather is just heating up now, which is rather unusual, for most years we would have already had several weeks of “if it is so hot now, what will summer be like!” conversations. Our garden was almost dead from a warm dry winter, and we were planning memorial ceremonies for some beloved plants, but then the spring rains came and everything bloomed. We have some plants flower for the first time in the five years we have been in the country this spring.

Of course, it means Mr FD has to mow every three or four days. Plovers are having their second hatching in the middle of the lawn, and so the mowing only goes so far, before plover squawks alert Mr FD that he has gone as far as they will allow. I caught sight of him mowing with a long stick clutched in one hand the other day. Apparently if the Plover Pair are flying he eyeballs them, points the stick directly at them and they have second thoughts about their murderous intent.

We are a positive animal sanctuary – rabbits, hares, bush turkey, plovers, ibis, various parrots, magpies, bandicoots, wallabies, kangaroos. It is a hot bed of fecundity.

Luckily, Mf FD and I are too old for such things…

 

 

 

sliding into happy every after

smell the flowers

What a difference a few months make.

We have been graced with a Grandson, Petit Garcon, a brother to Petite Fille, who is now 4 years of age. Our second granddaughter, Peppercorn, is about to celebrate her second birthday. I know it sounds corny, but they have changed our lives in wonderful ways we never imagined. A little ego boost to have someone call your name with delight whenever they see you, too! Unconditional love is priceless. Well, unconditional love as long as there is the possibility of a little surprise in Grandma’s bag!

Ending the year as semi-retired, with no plans for full time work in my foreseeable future. I have had some health issues, body and mind, and now I am need time to recover my health and to mend. Maybe, next year I will do some cover teaching, just day cover, not contract work, but my primary plan is to slow down, smell the eucalyptus and spend more time with our family.

When I started writing my blog, originally on Vox, I was approaching fifty, and our three children were still living at home. Now I am approaching sixty in 2018, with two married daughters, and three grandchildren. I changed careers, moved from the city to the country, and gained Augie Dog after a life of cats. Amazing where the journey of 10 years takes us…

 

Things that remind you that you live in the country

Mr. FD was pruning the shrub at our driveway entrance when our neighbour struck up a conversation – about the trouble with rabbits and hares, and the chaos created by the local bush turkey.

The bush turkey is busy digging mounds to attract females, of which we have seen none, and creating chaos in our little forest plot, leaf litter and mulch tossed across both driveways to the extent it feels like I am driving off-road. We have had several conversations with the turkey about his behaviour, and we explained that though we are not American we could adopt Thanksgiving. I have suggested showing the large cooking pot to The Turkey as proof of intent, problem is I don’t like eating turkey!

press

It doesn’t take much to make a good day for Mr FD and I, now that we are more mature. Today, we had to drive to the city for my appointment with the cardiologist.

No one tried to kill us on the road, and when we didn’t miss the turnoff to the hospital and wander around the suburb lost. In the car park, we found a free car park on the first floor. Then, I remembered to note the area we were parked in and that we had to go to the four floor to access the hospital entrance.

Once in the hospital we walked by the pharmacy and ohmygodohmygod there was the exact soft toy I had been hoping to find for months for our about to be born grandchild, to match his older siblings soft toy we had given her at her birth (Petite Fille). The coffee shop had lovely fresh food and pretty good coffee that we didn’t have to rush through before my appointment. The coffee temperature was just right, unlike the airport which always has coffee way too hot to drink before we have to board.

In the doctor’s office, I had barely to wait five minutes and I was in. The doctor remembered I was a teacher, well, maybe it was in his notes, but he cared enough to  read his notes and ask me how the teacher was today.  I received a fantastic report after months and months of blood pressure problems, so I am grateful for that. I don’t have to return unless a new health issue arises. YAY!

No problems with paying our parking fee on the return to the carpark. And when Mr FD broke a piece off a creeper growing over a stone wall, only one old couple saw us and had the grace to laugh. It is one of the joys of being mature, having the courage to break a piece from a plant and sneak it home. Well, maybe not sneak, but it did ride home with us and is not ensconced in six plant pots. Saving the earth, one stolen cutting at a time.

No one tried to kill us on the way home, and when we stopped by the local butcher we snared some great meat bargains.

As I said, it doesn’t take much to make a great day, and that is a good thing.

 

P.S. I off to the city tomorrow on baby watch. I will be with Petite Fille while her parents are in hospital.

 

 

 

Don’t just smell the flowers – make them

golden

I’ve tried to be more creative this year, professionally and privately.

In the school library, I have tried to make displays that are big and “in your face”, or interactive. Minerva, my erstwhile assistant, and I spent several weeks making large flowers from tissue paper for a “bloom and read” display. It was a big compliment for us when the art department asked for the flowers when we dismantled the display. They will be reused in their arts gala later in the year.

The interesting side bar, or maybe even the most important result, is the change that our flower making brought about in Minerva. In the six years I have worked with Minerva she has always claimed that she has no creativity, no creative abilities or talents. Of course, we all possess “creativity”; what we lack is confidence. Minerva was no different.

The simple act of folding paper flowers, experiencing the joy of creation, and sharing the positive reactions and comments of our community has opened a new mindset for Minerva that was totally unexpected. Now, instead of standing back and watching me create displays she is participating, to the point the she is picking items up off the side of the road to include in our work. She is also taking this mindset into her own life, looking at the world through a different lens.

It really is true that every journey starts with the first step, or in this case, the first tissue flower.