DOWN TO EARTH SIMPLE LIVING FORUMS

DOWN TO EARTH SIMPLE LIVING FORUMS
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20 March 2013

The whole world in the backyard

This was first posted June 2012.

I've had a lot of emails lately thanking me for various things so I want to remind you all that I am a normal woman and despite what some of you think, I am not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. I think that some of you think I'm better than I am. I would like to do more than I do, I would like to be better than I am, but I'm just me and I have to settle for that. I think my saving grace is that I'm easy on myself now. I don't expect perfection in myself or anything else, or anything close to it.


I think I'm like an organic backyard orange. I look old and motley on the outside, if you had to pay for me you'd offer five cents at a stretch, but when you open me up, the inside is sweet, juicy and healthy. It's a surprise. I think most of us are like that. Very few of us are like supermarket oranges that look perfect, cost a lot, but rarely live up to their promise. Most of us do our best but we are all flawed. We all think we should do more and be more, but now that I've got a few more years on me, I know that being flawed is not a crime, it's just a part of life. If I had not made all the mistakes I have made in my life, I wouldn't be the person I am now. When I fail, I learn from it. Not much happens when life goes smoothly and you succeed all the time. I'd much rather push myself and fail than to sit back and never try because I was too scared. Life is made interesting by uncertainty and the need to improve. 


If you look closely at the photo above you'll see what looks like a little black V shape - it's right in the middle at the top. That is a little male willy wagtail bird that lives here in the trees. He always joins the chooks and wanders around with them pecking at the grass and the crumbs they leave behind. I've noticed he's in nearly every photo I take of the chooks now.

It has been a beautiful winter day here today. I've got three layers on (one cotton and two woollen), the sky is bright blue, the air is crisp and the wind blows right through you. I've done some weeding, I've researched recipes, written, read and knitted. I sat for a while on the back garden bench and took it all in. I could live my whole life right here and not feel I'd missed one thing. So much is happening now that autumn has turned into winter - the pecan tree is still full of leaves that will soon turn brown and drop, the wisteria is golden and almost bare but the orange tree is growing and putting on new leaves already.





The tomatoes are going gangbusters, there are plenty of crisp young peas for afternoon snacking in the garden, the lettuces are crisp and delicious, the potatoes are up and we have all sorts of cabbages, brocolli and kale growing slowly and delevoping their unique flavours. The lemon tree is full of ripe fruit and it makes me think of one of the CWA recipes I saw today for Lemon Delicious pudding. As I breathe in the cold air and watch the chooks, and a willywag tail who thinks he's a chook, I know that this is close to as good as it gets. There is a small leg of pork and vegetables in the oven roasting for dinner, and I can smell that the red cabbage is almost ready. I should go inside but I'll linger here a little longer. I want to get colder. I want to see more.


We have some great outings coming up where I'm hoping to meet many of you. Toowoomba Library next Wednesday for two sessions: 10.30am and 5.30pm. We'll stay in Toowoomba overnight, thanks to the hospitality of the lovely staff and friends of the Toowoomba Library. The following week we have the big day out at Bell where the old hall will be chockers with all us girls and a few men; then in the last week of June, I'm speaking at the Landcare conference in Brisbane. But that last week is also the week Hanno goes into hospital to have cataracts removed, so, as usual, it's the good with the bad. The more things change, the more they stay the same. But I know that while I'm at home with interesting and productive work each day and with a few outings thrown in for interest, I'm happy and fulfilled. Life's good. I hope that when you weigh it all up, yours is too.


15 comments:

  1. How wonderful to read your reflection on the time of year and your beautiful blessings. It has helped me slow down and remember my own. Thank you.

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  2. I'm loving reading your old posts. Thank you for posting them even though you are not too good. Hope your leg gets better soon

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  3. your chickens are so healthy, they are beauties, they surely have a little pal following along, maybe he feels safe with them and follows along for the food they leave.
    I wish I was in Australia I would love to meet you, I have enjoyed your book so much,

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    1. Thank you Laurie. I'm pleased you enjoyed it. One of the surprises I've found since the book came out is that I like meeting the new people it has brought my way.

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  4. What a sweet, wise post. I suspect you wouldn't change much you've written here if you were to write it today - except it would be even more mellow (if that were possible)...

    Hoping you will be feeling better and better each day and returning to all the things that make your life full, happy & productive.

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  5. You're right Rebecca. I wouldn't change much at all.

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  6. You may not be perfect, but you do some amazing things.

    I enjoy reading your posts very much.

    Love Angela (south EnglandUK)

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  7. Your pictures as just lovely. When we lived in FL we enjoyed picking fresh grapefruit, oranges and lemons from our back yard. I wish we could grow citrus trees here in KY (USA), but alas, the climate is too cold. We do have some young apple, pear, peach, apricot, cherry and plum trees growing. Hopefully they will bear in a few years. I am looking forward to planting our garden in about another 6-7 weeks, just as you are going into the fall season. Thank you for sharing your simple life with us...I look forward to your blog each day! ~Elaine

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  8. Rhonda-I love coming to visit here because you never try to put yourself out as someone who knows it all. You are a joy to read because of your joy for your life. I think we all aspire to a life filled with joy. Hope your foot is feeling better today-willing it better may work for you-it worked for my Mom most of the time! In your last picture you show a small bottle wrapped in silver-I have one so similar to yours-don't know where I got it but I love it.

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  9. Great post Rhonda..thank you. I love coming here because it really is 'down to earth'. We all have flaws but if we allow them to they will build character. I see that in you. Keep on sharing of your days, our generation has much to share with the younger generation. I too am happy, fulfilled and content.
    Wishing you and yours good health and God's blessings!

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  10. Thank you Rhonda a lovely post, it made me take a long look at my life and count my blessings which are many. Sometimes I think we all need to do that. I hope you feel better soon. Linda gloucestershire England x

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  11. I found you in this crazy internet world and have felt so inspired. If I gave you my life story, or even just my realities of the past few years, you'd most likely do as everyone else and wonder how I get through my days. .....then again, I read the things you're flitting through your mind and i feel a kinship. I lost a daughter, I have a son who's had over 8 surgeries this year and he'll only be one in the next few weeks....I'm being told my 2 year old is showing signs of autism and because he still doesn't talk, he has been recommended to see a specialist. I also have a 17 year old and all the joy and craziness his testosterone brings. ....your words rang so true to my nearly 40 year old ears this morning. Everything we've been through makes us who we are. .....others looking in to my life see hardship. Yes, things have been hard but we feel pretty dang blessed too. ....I always smile when i see comments about mothers having different priorities and may not be able to do certain things, blah, blah, blah. True but at the same time, we all wake up and choose how we live that particular day. I keep hearing that we only live once and i think that's such load of bull. If I've learned anything from my life, we only die once. We live each day and can do so much and also have plenty of time to stop and be thankful for what we do have. ....I apologize for rambling but I thought you should know your words are impacting me (and surely countless others). I am improving daily and want you to have some credit. Thank you.

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  12. Good Morning Rhonda Jean - this is totally unrelated to your post though i did so enjoy reading it.
    I keep getting a sign on the Forum page saying that the Database is being repaired. The notice has been there for quite some time and I wondered if it is just coming through on my computer or if it is still down. It says to go to Facebook but I do not do Facebook.
    Thank you so much
    Karen NZ

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    1. Karen, the database is still being repaired and it will probably be another couple of days before it's ready to relaunch. I'm sorry for the inconvenience this is bringing.

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  13. You have a wonderful backyard! I am getting mighty inspired for when Spring actually comes to the Yukon!

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