2 December 2007

A simple day at home

They arrived just as promised - twelve beautiful bantam eggs. Helen sent them from Perth on Friday, they travelled overnight and arrived in Brisbane on Saturday morning. Hanno drove in to pick them up and when he arrived home with the precious cargo, I found they were carefully wrapped in tissues, placed in a carton, wrapped in newspaper - Tuesday's Australian (which Hanno saved to read), and placed inside a plastic tub for the journey. Not one crack. How good is that!

Helen told us to place the eggs under the mama hen (Mary) when it was dark, so they sat in their tub on the kitchen bench all day where the temperature remained a constant 28C (82F). When it was getting dark, Hanno and I took the eggs to the hen house, where the aunties had settled in for the night on the roost and mama hen was sitting on her nest where she has been constantly for the past three weeks. Hanno gently picked her up and I place all the eggs in her nest...

...while the aunties looked on.

And then Mary did what she's been waiting patiently for, she sat on her eggs.

You might be able to see that she fluffed up her feathers. I'm not sure if that was because she was upset that she'd been removed from the nest, or because she was proud of her eggs, but I have to tell you, she looked content as she sat there moving slightly underneath and settling in for the beginning of a 21 day pre-hatching period. December 23 is the day.

Thank you Helen. Hanno and I really appreciate your generosity and the effort and time you put into sending us the eggs.

We had a lovely day yesterday. We were both up early, me because I wanted to catch up on everything not done last week while I was at work, and Hanno because he had a few things to do and then drove the 90 kms into Brisbane. I did two loads of washing and hung them out to dry and then started packing the kitchen equipment back into the newly replaced cupboards. We actually only have two new cupboards, those under the sink, but there is a new benchtop, sink and appliances. I'll tell you more about them when everything is back, the curtains are hanging and I have taken photos.

I worked steadily all morning, taking my usual break at 10am to sit with a cool drink on the front verandah. It was lovely sitting there looking out onto our garden which, with the unusually mild weather we've been having, along with quite a bit of rain, looks beautiful. The agapanthus and star jasmine along the side fence, the sage, roses and daylilies are flowering beautifully and contrast nicely against the vivid green of the wisteria and camellia bushes. We are so fortunate to live in such a beautiful place and I am thankful everyday for it.

Hanno arrived home at lunchtime so I made sandwiches and tea for us both. A few months ago we changed our phone to another company and were given a free phone and a free DVD movie trial to Bigpond movies. We have 20 DVD movies free before they encourage us to sign up to a deal, which we won't do. : ) I couple of weeks ago we watched How to Make and American Quilt and my all-time favourite Australian movie, Hotel Sorrento. For all you Australians out there, if you haven't watched it, it's the best movie I've seen that defines the uniqueness of being Australian, and our relationship to America and the UK. Yesterday we watched The Horse Whisperer. You'll probably notice all these are old movies. It takes us a while to catch up with what's happening in the movie world. LOL

What a wonderful film The Horse Whisperer is! I had no expectations one way of the other about it but both Hanno and I loved it. It's essentially about a young girl and her horse, both badly injured in an accident, who seek the help of a horse whisperer, but it was also about simple living and finding your own personal happiness - either in the countryside or in the city, with those you love. It was beautifully filmed showing the richness of American country life and the vastness of the mountain country in Montana (although I don't know where it was shot). The scene of a happy rancher and his family around the dinner table and another where they socialise with neighbours at a country dance were perfect.

I thoroughly recommend this film if you haven't seen it, but be warned, the scenes at the very start of the film, where the accident happens are terrible and I had to look away. Apart from that I believe the film is suitable for the whole family.

It was around 5.30pm when the movie finished so I picked some salad from the garden, boiled some eggs and made dinner. After we ate, when the sun was going down, we crept into the hen house to give Mary her heart's desire. And after this special day, and 20 more just like it, we'll hopefully be watching the hatching of our little partridge wyandottes.

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