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

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