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28 January 2013

Weather stops the move

It was a typical day here yesterday although the summer sun was shaded by thick clouds and heavy rain. I love days like that, knowing that the rain will pour down, making me feel cosy and safe. I rose at 4am and checked the blog.  Nothing much to be done there so I had a chance to look in my Reader and go visit a few of my favourite bloggers. Emails were waiting too I answered about 10 of them then realised I could be there all day, so I went to the kitchen and put on some oats for breakfast. While they cooked, I went outside, talked to our blue parrot boarder Chiko, fed Hettie and then, with umbrella in hand, walked out across the wet grass to let the chooks out. They went a bit mental when they saw the umbrella - so I put it down while they ran passed me, then collected an egg and walked back inside.

Remember that parched backyard I took a photo of a few days ago. Well, this is it yesterday afternoon.

I love stirring food at the stove. It is a quiet and slow activity that allows me to think. I stood there stirring the porridge and thought about the rain falling on our roof, how it was cleaning out the creeks and rivers, filling up tanks and dams and how much we all rely on rain to keep us alive. Meteorologists are predicting increasing severe weather events due to climate change. There have been catastrophic summer floods here for the past three years. So as I stood there stirring, with the rain pelting down on the roof, I made a silent vow to cut back on everything that isn't necessary and to encourage others to do that too. With the hot porridge in a bowl, I poured on some milk and honey, made a cup of black tea and enjoyed my breakfast. Hanno was still in bed listening to the flood updates and enjoying the sound of rain on the roof.

This is our creek, it went from almost empty and stagnant, to this overnight. We can usually walk around where you can see the water. The bottom of the photo is at the level of our backyard so if it rose another couple of feet, we'd be flooded. Luckily, I can't see that happening.

We've had 421mm/16½ inches as of 3pm yesterday afternoon. Certainly enough to fill many rivers and dams and here, our tanks are full, the grass is turning green in front of our eyes and it's a magnificent boost for our fast approaching main vegetable planting. We had wind gusts overnight that sounded like freight trains rushing past. I hope it settles down today and that everyone to the north and south of us are safe.

And now my exciting news! Kerry, Sunny and Jamie are moving back here to the Sunshine Coast. Yesterday was to be the day, but it was too wet and dangerous to even think about it. So the move is on today, I think. Kerry has lined up a couple of friends to help pack the hired truck and Jens will help at this end. Hanno will travel down to the Gold Coast on the train this morning to help Sunny with her car. She's not used to driving on the highway and with Jamie and the wet conditions, Hanno offered his help to drive her here. So if all goes according to plan, the truck will be packed by about lunchtime, Hanno, Sunny and Jamie will drive up in the car and Kerry will follow in the truck. The'll all come here for something to eat and drink, unload some of their gear here in our big shed, then Kerry and Sunny will take the truck and car the few kilometres over to their new home. They're renting a house from a family friend about 15 minutes away. Jamie will stay here with us for the afternoon while Kerry and Sunny get everything settled in their new home.  :- )

I am so happy they'll be close. No more 400 km trips when we want to see them. We'll be able to help with Jamie if we're needed, they'll be there if we need them and we'll be close for Sunny while Kerry's away at work. He's working away two weeks on and two weeks off. We won't be living in each others' pockets, none of us want that, but we'll be close enough to offer help in the difficult times, to have family lunches every so often and to see Jamie grow up. And I'm sure all the other grandmas and grandpas will know how that feels.

55 comments:

  1. Great news! Your son and his family moving close to you sounds lovely. I am not of grandmother age yet, but we live far away from our families and miss exactly what you describe.

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  2. I do, indeed know how you feel. After 16 years of having grandchildren in England ( I live in Canada) I finally have a grandson, now 2, living 20 minutes away.

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  3. That is wonderful news! How lovely to be so close together again.

    Mrs Homespun
    xoxo

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  4. This is very good news for you! Kerry, Sunny and Jamie within walking distance (well... almost :>))
    We stay mother-hens forever, from the first day of our first child's life, arent we?
    Grandchildren are such a blessing.
    Wishing you many years of shared happiness in health ahead.

    The rains are very much needed and blessings too, at your (hot) spot on the globe.

    I keep on cutting back on all things that aren't necessary and , oh my, does that make me happy and content, free(d).
    Greetings from The Netherlands,

    Jeanneke.

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  5. 16-1/2 inches!?!?!? Yikes!!!

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  6. What a blessing for your grandson to be moving so close! I'm glad to see you're getting that rain you needed - our whole state here is in a severe drought, with hardly any snowfall this winter :( It's hard not to worry, but I've realized it's far beyond my control, so I'm taking the opportunity to add more mulch to the garden for spring planting. I've also been thinking much about living on less this year - looking for more ways, most especially, to reduce our waste.
    -Jaime

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  7. Rhonda you said you like stirring food on the stove as it helps you think. I am the same when I have delicate dishes to hand wash which cannot go into the dishwasher. Do you know apparently the late great Agatha Christie used to get a lot of her inspiration while standing at her sink doing her dishes? She said these repetitive tasks grounded her and allowed her mind to be free and allowed her imagination to produce her many and varied storylines.

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  8. Such wonderful news about your family moving closer! I hope the move goes well and that the weather calms down.
    As for the freak weather ups and downs, I have been thinking much along the same lines - cutting back, doing what I can to reduce the impact we are having on our climate. Looking forward to continuing to read your inspiring thoughts on this! Have a lovely day! Kirsten

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  9. Sounds lovely! My in laws have bought a house in our area as an investment for now but to retire to in a few years and I think it will be great, having that support and relationship but not living next door either. Hope the move goes well!

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  10. I can only imagine how thrilled you must be that your son & family are moving closer! Our 3 all live quite a ways away.

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  11. There's no better sound than rain on a tin roof! Glad your garden has received some much needed rain. We also had rain here in Sydney and we took advantage by fertilising the garden with chicken manure so it would get washed in and we could (hopefully) avoid that horrid smell.

    It must be wonderful to have family close for all of you. My parents are only up the coast but I do feel it not being able to see them at the drop of a hat. I hope you all enjoy the change.

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  12. Wonderful that your family will be closer!

    I always feel that strong winds after a stormy or rainy spell are a blessing; to get things slightly dried out and bring in a new piece of nicer weather.

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  13. It's 6:30am here on the Gold Coast.

    I was kept awake most of the night by the crashing wind. I just woke up and went and had a peak out the window and can see the shadecloth has been smashed.

    I haven't the heart to check my pot plants :(

    I'm glad for the needed rain but not this much of it!

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  14. Rhonda my heart is singing for you all! How wonderful that you will get to see them all more often- I know what you mean about the 400km trips! Both of our daughters and their families live more than 3 hours drive away from us-makes a day trip out of the question. :)

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  15. Just to think last week we were all desperate for rain and now this! Our tanks are full and it's still pouring down. I too love the sound of the rain on our tin roof.

    That's exciting news that your family is moving closer. How wonderful that your grandson will grow up with his grandparents so close!

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  16. Hi Rhonda, glad to hear they are moving closer. Be carefull with the weather. We are in northern nsw and it is very windy and rainy. I can only imagine it is the same in the gold coast.

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  17. Hello Rhonda, that is wonderful news your family are moving closer, I wish you all the best today with the move and to take care. My daughter's friend and her family were unable to fly home back to Melbourne from Qld yesterday afternoon due to flights cancelled. Qantas were great though and put them up in a hotel and hopefully they will be on their way home this morning. It is amazing the difference the rain has made to your garden. Have a great day.

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  18. Oh wow! You lucky duck! How lovely to have your family so close. Great for them too to have some support nearby!

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  19. Oh that's lovely for you all :) hope that Shane and Sandra are ok in Gladstone with the floods x Chrissie

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  20. Oh Rhonda finally Rain and fifteen minutes away sound like perfection to me. B

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  21. Wonderful news, Rhonda. I know what you mean. My daughter and husband and baby moved much closer(about 15 mins away) in November. It has been wonderful. We get to see them so much more and I feel much more a part of Evan's life as he is growing up.Good luck with the move. And we are getting some beautiful rain also.

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  22. Glad to hear you all survived the storms. My boys were quite delighted to see the sun this morning and some blue sky, however that has disappeared again already. Glad your family are moving closer there is nothing that will match the security of having family close by.

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  23. Hi Rhonda, really happy news about Kerry, Sunny & darling Jamie moving close to home, I'm sure you & Hanno will relish all you have described. We're glad to hear you've weathered the last few days of heavy rain & winds. We hope the weather holds out for the big move today. We've had a bit more rain in our catchment which has resulted in us being flood bound, with the water level reading 1.6m above our bridge. Gympie's Mary River is still rising & has already passed the 2011 mark, expected to peak at 21m later this afternoon, cutting off the town & Bruce Highway. It's sad to watch the people who live day to day without structure in their lives, go into panic mode during events like these, rushing out to "impulse buy & stock up" to see it through. Sad, really sad! Don jokes that we could be flood bound for at least a month before we would have to alter our everyday practices to manage.

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  24. Such good news Rhonda, I do hope that the move is able to go ahead today.

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  25. So good to see you have finally received such a needed rain. I have no doubts this is a huge relief to all.

    I can feel your excitement at having your family closer :) In our family we were blessed when we moved away, to have my father join us in the same town a few years later. It made such a wonderful difference in our lives, but mostly in the lives of our children who had a grandparent close by. :)

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  26. I am so glad your grandson is moving closer. What a blessing for the both of you! Enjoy the rain.

    I do have a quick question that has been nagging at me. When you rise at 4am, what is your usual bedtime? Do you lay down and have a nap in the afternoons? I find that so early and I can't imagine as I truly need my sleep. Thanks!

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  27. Look at all that rain! You are one very powerful blogger ;)

    Great news about the family move - you must be over the moon!

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  28. what a joy it will be to have family so close, take care and keep dry, we have been watching the news of your weather and its frightening,

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  29. Look at that rain! I hope your tanks fill up beautifully. Also, great to hear your happiness in family moving closer.

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  30. I am so happy for you that your kids and grandson are moving closer. Having just had the pleasure of our 10 month old grandson having his first sleepover last night with us I completely understand how you feel. I would be lost without that boy.

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  31. Re the weather I thought I would remind everyone that when I was a kid about 55 years ago this kind of weather was typical here in Queensland. It always rained on the first day of school. We live in Laidley and some of you will have heard of the flooding which is real but the whole town is not inundated and we are fine. Some people will spend another night tonight at the High School Evacuation Centre but should go home tomorrow. This is well run. I go there to find out what is going to happen later. The flooding is receding but we will get some more tonight and that should be it. We even had some sun today. This flood was about 50cms higher than the 2011 one.
    Jill of Laidley

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  32. Hi Rhonda, hope you are still high and reasonably dry, by all accounts things are getting hairy up in QLD. We are very soggy here but safe from any major flooding.

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  33. How wonderful for all of you. Having family close at hand is a blessing I give thanks for every day. Not that we see each other every day by any means, but just the ease of contact. Actually, if I had my way, most of us would still be able to live in greater family constellations. Now and again you meet someone who has this arrangement - parents, aunts and uncles living in houses very close to each other but it is really unusual now. I think of the benefits for children growing up with several adults to turn to, cousins to have fun with etc. Today´s society, not least in Sweden, seems geared to distansing families and focussing on individuals. Well, that´s just my pipe dream and even I see it´s not practical in modern society.
    Warm best wishes from a cold and snowbound Sweden
    Ramona

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  34. What lovely news about your family, you must both be thrilled. Good news on the rain too; here's hoping the rest of your country has equally happy news weather wise. Australia certainly seems to have had a hard year this year and I'm hoping it won't become a pattern for you through climate change.

    Good luck with a smooth move and a happy new household near by.

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  35. Rhonda it is absolutely bucketing down in Sydney at the moment....i took a deep breath this afternoon and let my two little ones run out and jump around in the muddy puddles in the back yard, they had a ball!

    Glad to hear your family is moving closer, my mum and dad are closeby but both work full time and so they don't get to see our little ones much, sad really, but hopefully they see how we live and one day may want to slow down themselves...here's hoping!
    LH

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  36. Julie ... Barossa ValleyJanuary 28, 2013 9:28 pm

    Evening Rhonda ... we have been watching the flooding on the tv ... it would be lovely to have rain here in SA ... not 16 1/2 inches tho :D pleased to read your family has moved closer.

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  37. Oh, Rhonda - I'm so happy for you all! What a wonderful time in your lives to be close enough to share life's ups and downs. It will be fantastic to see Jamie frequently - little ones change so quickly, don't they? Your sandpit will certainly be getting a solid workout from here on in!

    Please tell Kerry and Sunny that we wish them all the best in their new home. We hope that they make many, many happy memories in it :)

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  38. wonderful news! We are incredibly blessed to have all 3 of our children a 15 minute drive away, and it is the best!

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  39. Aw' that's nice for you all. Hope the move goes OK. Hope the potty weather calms down, too. (We have it here, as well). My elderly neighbour won't believe that all this climate change and global warming is because of we humans...sigh..but she does recycle!

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  40. Wondeful news! Win win for everyone. :)

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  41. Yay! to your family moving closer. And the rain was much needed, so you are doubly blessed. It will be a good garden year.

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  42. That is such wonderful news about the move. Really. I saw all kinds of crazy weather stories from Australia on the news this morning and I thought of you and Hanno. I hope the rain has stopped and the move went well! Hope your week is off to a good start!

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  43. Oh I'm so thankful you finally got some rain! I miss the rain...the smell. Oh I miss it. We got snow last night! LOL Not sure that counts as the same in the pleasure department. :)
    That great that they're moving closer to you and Hanno. It's nice to have that support system close when you have a little one. You'll have such a nice time with Jamie closer to you.
    And SUPER nice of Hanno to offer to drive Sunny's car. I don't like driving on big interstates and highways either.
    Have a lovely day! :)
    - Kristin

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  44. How lovely that your family is going to be so much closer! :-) I hope the move went well... I was looking at your pictures of the rain, I can't believe how much you have had in 24 hours and it makes me wonder, once again, why we can't deal with the weather that is thrown at us in the UK. When it snows the country goes to pot and when it rains (as it is doing very hard at the moment) we end up flooded :-( I was laughing at your comment about the chickens and the umbrella, aren't they funny things? I know mine are!

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  45. It's incredible to see the difference between the photos in your post from the 22nd to your post today. You must be so relieved to be able to plan and plant your 2013 garden with confidence!

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  46. Rain here too. Just under 7 inches and the grass started growing overnight. The cows aren't very happy with the mud but a few days sunshine will help a lot there. We had the creeks come down and have lost a lot of the creek fencing. All our tanks are full and the vegie patch should be a goer now. Water really is a lifeline for us all.

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  47. Hi Rhonda, hope you are getting some sun today, here on the mountain we have a nice sunny morning so far.
    How wonderful that you will have family close by and be able to see them all more often and also be support for Sunny and watch Jamie as he grows.
    The wind was awful at the Gold Coast on the news last night, hope Hanno got back safely.

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  48. Congrats on both the rain and on having part of your family move closer :) Wishing a safe drive to all during the big move!

    Best,
    Mandi

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  49. Wonderful news about your son and family moving close by. Hope the terrible floods in the East Coast have not affected you.

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  50. Wow , glad to hear you are all okay and delighted to hear the family are moving closer, yes Rhonda ,you will love helping ... Shocked to see the before and after photo's ,water is something a lot of folks take for granted and we just can't do without it.Stay safe and well ,hope the big move goes smoothly . All the very best to you all Margaret from Tasmania

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  51. This is such a wonderful plan for your family. The way it used to be .. having many generations living in close proximity to each other .. what better way to get on in life without too much outside intervention when a crisis arises .. and all of the bonding of grandparents and grandchildren; so happy for you all. May you find a sliver of good weather for the move. Be safe.

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  52. Yay for the family move back close - the bond with grandparents is such a special one and little Jamie will now have that 'closeby'. I know you'll all make the most of it - as you say you won't live in each other's back pockets, but you'll be close enough for company and assistance (both ways).

    SO glad to see the rain - and can imagine how wonderfully green everything is going to look a day or two later. You should have blogged about the dry spell earlier - who knew that's all it took to bring the rain bucketing down?

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  53. I also love the ritual of cooking oatmeal for breakfast every morning. With a 5 month old baby around, my days are anything but routine. But breakfast, that is my quiet time, the same every morning. Except I enjoy mine with a hot cup of coffee instead of tea, it's my one vice. :)

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  54. What happy news that your family will be closer. We spend a huge amount of traveling back and forth - sometimes I wish we could just stay put but that would mean not seeing those we love so much. I think, that if circumstances allow it, it is much better to live close to family. Take care in the storms! Cheers! Evelyn

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  55. Having family close is so good. We are in Brisbane and my sister and her four kids and four grandchildren are at the Sunshine Coast. I often wonder how many times I have travelled the roads in between us.

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