DOWN TO EARTH SIMPLE LIVING FORUMS

DOWN TO EARTH SIMPLE LIVING FORUMS
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7 April 2014

A quiet Sunday in autumn

We're eating soup but I haven't changed the bed linen to flannel yet; the sun rises at 6 and night falls at 6; I haven't yet reached for a cardigan but it's still warm enough to dry my just-washed hair with the desk fan. Oh autumn, how I have missed you. This quiet and peaceful season is truly my favourite. I love everything about it, not least the fact that it means summer is behind us, there are months of cool weather ahead and outside, our vegetable garden is slowly erupting into a crazy mish-mash of green and ever increasing trellises.

Barley, root vegetable and bone marrow soup. Recipe coming later in the week.

Hanno was up early to go to the market yesterday. He wanted to buy seedlings and came back with more kale, kohl rabi, turnips, red onions, green climbing beans, borage, lettuce and a small, potted bay tree. I was already at my desk writing when he came back but I went outside for a while to help him decide where everything should go. I planted the borage close to the cucumbers but I'll tell you more about that when I've had the chance to take some photos so you can see it for yourself.


We had an escapee on the loose last week when Miss Tammy Wyandotte discovered she could fly over the fence. She was swanning around on the lawn when Hanno caught her and I cut the flight feathers on one of her wings. I didn't think she'd be able to fly that high because she's a big bird but I know how wily chooks can be and when they get an idea in their heads about what they want, there is no stopping them.

I prepared a small shoulder of lamb for lunch yesterday. Shoulder of lamb is quite a thrifty cut of meat and by the look of this one, it will do us for three days, plus sandwiches. I cooked it with the usual suspects - potatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and onions - all baked, with lightly boiled green cabbage on the side. I cooked it all in the oven, the cabbage sitting in a lidded Pyrex dish alongside the other vegetables. I wanted to serve Brussel sprouts but the cabbage was getting old and needed to be used.  I did more than enough baked vegetables to make sure I had enough for today's bubble and squeak, and that should use up the rest of the cabbage.


On Sunday morning there was the delicious aroma of baked lamb wafting through our home. Back when I was young in the 1950s, a roast was something most of us had for our sit down Sunday lunch. On those Sunday mornings you could walk through most suburbs of Sydney and smell lamb cooking away. Lamb was a cheap meat then and Australia had yet to discover the dubious pleasures of eating mass produced roast chicken. Back then, chicken was a celebration meat and most of us only had it when a backyard chook was sacrificed for a special event.



I was writing at my desk for most of yesterday but we had time out for morning tea on the front verandah. The day had that relaxed Sunday feel that I took full advantage of during the afternoon when I sat with my knitting. When I finished Jono's cardigan I started on another Lark Rise to Candleford shawl. This time, in a soft camel organic cotton called Patience. Last year, I wore my grey one on almost every one of the cold days. When I'm not knitting, the shawl sits in a very pretty cotton bag my sister made for me when she was here. I am a very lucky woman to be surrounded by generous, productive people. Who else has just started a new project? I usually have several on the go at the same time, but writing takes up most of my brain power these days. Sigh.

I have entered the Australian Writing Centre's blogging competition, which runs for a month. If you feel inclined to vote for me and my blog, I'd appreciate it. You can vote by clicking on the competition tag on my side bar. My warmest thanks to the readers who have voted so far. As a side benefit, I've enjoyed seeing some new names commenting in the previous post, along with some oldies I haven't seen for a while. xxx


26 comments:

  1. Sounds like a wonderful weekend to me!
    What did you have with the tea? Scones? What was in them? They look delicious.
    My weekend was so stressful, but I managed to get some little knitting done. I am trying to do fair isle for the first time :)

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    1. We had date scones, Klaine.

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    2. Mhhh, sounds delicious! Thank you for your answer!

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  2. Done! Thank you for re-posting about the contest. After reading your prior entry, voting slipped my mind.

    I am, like you, making a shawl, although we are heading toward another hot Georgia summer here and I am not using a pattern...since I don't know how to read them *hee* Also, I just yesterday made a huge pot of creamy chicken vegetable soup. The stock is a mix from a chicken we ate last week, some delicious juice from some pork chops this weekend, and the leftover juice from a beef roast. We aren't purists here :-)

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  3. Morning Rhonda...I second your comment about wiley chickens and their determination....I now have new bok choy seedlings in that are fenced better than Fort Knox. I'm working on a simple quilt of different size squares, cut from all my pink scraps...it was to be a light summer quilt, so it might be ready for next summer. The little bag from Tricia is a sweet gift, I like having bags or baskets for different projects to live in.

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  4. Lovely post today Rhonda, I am still waiting for the cooler autumn weather, I think it was 31 here yesterday... Like a few others here I am making a shawl, my first big crochet project in multicoloured wool. I have picked it up again in the hope that I complete it by the time the cool weather does arrive. I love the little bag that Tricia made you, it s the most beautiful fabric isn't it? It looks like what I think a dilly bag might be like!

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  5. Well that sounds like a good mix for the weekend,a little of this and that, you tend to appreciate a bit of knitting time when it is among other things.I have done a lot of sock knitting this past few days, as I have to rest a leg with a stitched up excision.
    I bought some pure wool to knit 2 felted craft bags, but it is soooo soft and lovely I think I will undo the 2 balls worked and use all 7 balls for a short sleeved jumper as my most used jumper (6 years) is an acrylic mix and I prefer natural fibres.
    Happy to see Hanno back in the garden and able to potter about.

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  6. Rhonda, spring used to be my favourite season but, as last spring began with a heatwave for us here on the Darling Downs where we usually have a gradual introduction to the warmer weather, I am now preferring autumn instead as it seems to be the season when there aren't any weather 'events' like we have had these past few years.

    It sounds like Hanno is feeling okay so I hope he is improving. Have a productive day.

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  7. Hi Rhonda,

    of course I'm happy to vote for you, it would be a well-deserved win :) Autumn is my favourite season too. Normally we'd have the fire going by now, but it's not been as cold as usual - I'm a bit disappointed!

    Have a wonderful day,

    Madeleine.X

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  8. Ah yes Rhonda those Sunday lamb roasts! With ice cream and peaches in summer and steamed pudding and custard in winter.
    Autumn is my favourite time of the year as well because summer is on its way out. Still hanging around here a bit though. It means that I can finish the shawl that I am knitting for a dear friend, a short sleeve cardi for me, a baby kina for my granddaughter and just for a change a crotchet ripple blanket for another granddaughter! Have a great week!

    Cheers, Karen near Gympie

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  9. Rhonda I never thought of putting the cabbage in the oven with a roast! We are having a roast tonight and I've some cabbage I should use up -- how long for crisp tender please?
    I'm making myself a cardigan in a gorgeous watermelon coloured Jo Sharp alpaca silk georgette yarn, I've done the back and one and a half fronts.

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    1. About 20 - 30 minutes, Rose. It depends on how hot the oven is but I start checking it at 20 minutes. Someone sent me some Jo Sharp yarn. It's beautiful.

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    2. Thanks Rhonda, it's in the oven now.

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  10. I'm crocheting a new beanie for my daughter who is almost 14 months old. I just finished one on the weekend and it is a little too tight so the next one will fit better and the tight one can go to a friend with a younger bub. I used to love creative winters but I have done so little since bub was born - she definitely demands most of our attention and time leaving little time for other things. I haven't made laundry powder since she was born so it feels good now to be able to make her a few little things after I get her down for a sleep.

    Voted for your blog earlier too - I love reading it as often as I get a chance!

    Maya (Canberra)

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  11. I'm just starting some new dishcloths as some of the older ones are getting quite worn thru. Finally finished a shawl this last week - probably won't need it now that we are heading into springtime here in Colorado. Voted for you as your blog is a favorite - our seasons are reversed but all else is very similar.

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  12. Hello Rhonda, lovely to be reading your blog again. I have had a long and necessary blog break but it is time to join again l feel. I love the look of your shawl. My brain is just too full to concentrate on a difficult pattern these days, but a cosy shawl for cool spring/summer ev. is just the thing. Pam

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    1. welcome back, Pam. Yes, the shawl is a very easy knit.

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  13. Oh you just gave me an idea for our lamb left over for dinner tonight! Sandwiches and gravy... thanks haha. I have recently bought your book and I LOVE IT! Well done. I will be using it for years to come!
    reneehartsthis.blogspot.com
    Renee x

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  14. Please share that soup recipe; it looks very delicious and nourishing with bone marrow. We just arrived back from Coffs Harbour and it is freezing here and tomorrow I will be changing all the sheets to flannel and the winter doonas. I have fond memories of trying to catch our renegade chickens over the back yard fence with my dads fishing net. Did you make that knitting bag? Very handy and pretty.

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  15. It sounds as if your Sunday was a success! I'm working on learning how to crochet a rug from recycled material. I'm thinking I will make place mats instead as Christmas gifts. I have just gotten back into crocheting as I am now retired. Lunch will be corn bread from corn I ground that I got free. I'll add a veggie to that and call it yummy. Stay safe.

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  16. hmmm...we also had a beautiful autumn Sunday, invited my husband's parents for roasted lamb shawarma (a Yotam Ottolenghi recipe), and I'm knitting a jersey for the littlest in the family...but it's going slowly: one row knit, one row purl, one row knit, one row purl...;-)

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  17. I'm knitting that shawl too. Its my first attempt at knitting something other than a scarf or beanie! Simple as it is, it will be a real accomplishment for me.
    kxx

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  18. Rhonda I do love reading about how your seasons differ to ours here in the UK - we're just seeing the first of our real spring days now - the temperature is still chilly first thing, but by the middle of the day it's mainly warm enough to be outside without a jacket. The trees are just bursting into life, and spring flowers are blooming everywhere!

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  19. Rhonda, I there a place where I can find the pattern for the Larkrise to Candleford shawl? I would love a little wrap for my shoulders next winter, my art studio is the coldest room in the house and need a small shawl that will stay out of the way as I work. Thanks.

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    1. Hello Peascod, I hope you've had a lovely Easter. The pattern is on Ravelry: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/larkrise-to-candleford-minnies-shawl

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