Every morning, on that short walk over dewy grass to our chook house, I am usually aware of a feeling of acute optimism and hope for the day ahead. I bend down to pick up a brick to keep the gate open, unlock the door to the coop, remove the block of wood that stops rats and other night visitors opening the food hopper, then call the girls to come out and greet the day. They wait at the gate for me to walk out with them but often I stop to look at the garden. It's backdropped by the house and I can stand there in the half-light with the bright green of the garden almost shining right in front of me while the house, lit then by only one kitchen light, stands in the shadows. This scene almost always fills me with optimism and eagerness for the day ahead.
I felt that optimism yesterday when I stood looking, came back inside to get my camera, and took pictures of what I saw. I thought I might capture that feeling and use the image as a computer wallpaper - a reminder to myself of what is possible, even in a small and simple backyard.
The chook house, with the flash. The first of the girls share a meal at the hopper, Heather watches, waiting her turn, and Kylie, as usual, sits on the nest trying to hatch invisible eggs.
Yesterday was my big workday. I needed to be full of enthusiasm and energy. I left here around 7am to go to the bakery and IGA to select food to serve at the Centre. I did one of my Frugal Home workshops and knew I would have hungry mouths to feed. I settled on fruit scones and tea for morning tea, with crackers and cheese, chicken and ham salad sandwiches, wedges of watermelon and orange, tea and coffee for lunch. I over catered because there would be another meeting at night and whatever was left over could be eaten then along with the mushroom pasta bake I took from home for our evening meal.
I picked up all my supplies, was really pleased I had all my volunteers to help make the sandwiches, then settled down before anyone else arrived to write a short piece for the local newspaper. The phone rang ... twice. Two of my volunteers were sick and could not come in. Luckily our high school trainee would be there along with one volunteer.
We had a number of activities happening during the morning - a first aide for babies course and our sewing circle, as well as my workshop. I made some phone calls then saw Sonya from the Permaculture Pathways blog walk in. She came to learn how to make an apron so I took her out to the sewing room, invited her to make a cuppa, then went back to find our statistics file so I could use it in a report I was writing. Babies, mums and dads started filing in for the first aide course, then my Frugal Home people arrived and we were into it. I think the people who attended found it helpful. There were two ladies there who read my blog. Hello Caroline and Natalie! The course over, we had lunch together, then I started writing my report for the later meeting.
People kept coming in to talk, I had about five phonecalls, another small meeting, then we closed the Centre for the day. The presenter of a solar panel info session arrived to set up for his presentation at 7 pm. I heated up the pasta bake, got the leftover sandwiches from the fridge and set up our small meeting room for our committee meeting. That ran from 5 till 8pm and as it got later and I grew tired, I thought a couple of times about that view over my turnip tops and cabbages across to the house. My feelings of optimism were being replaced by thoughts of a warm and cosy bed.
I drove home in the pouring rain and there Hanno and Alice were waiting for me as I knew they would be. I sat with Hanno for five minutes, then went to bed, happy that I had used my time well that day. And now I'm about to go out and walk to the chook house again and see that scene again in the half light. I will spent this day at home baking and cooking and maybe napping this afternoon. Tomorrow I'm back at the Centre again for Sorry Day, we have a big function planned that I am really looking forward to.
Thank you all so much for sharing your stories yesterday. I have not yet read them all but will try to do that today. I'm also going to visit the blogs mentioned but that will have to wait till later in the week. I hope you have a lovely day today and enjoy what you do.