24 hours here

20 March 2017
My daily life is so familiar to me and it makes so much sense that I think it must be normal for everyone to live as we do. It's only when I go out, or read about how others live that I know that living like this is far from what is normal now. I'm not saying our way of life is better because I see many people living lives of productivity and purpose. It is the best way for us though and that's all I need to know. I believe the workings of anyone's life are determined primarily by mindset, the stage of life you're at, by personal circumstances and responsibilities. My life used to be harder but we're in a different season now, we have different priorities and, most importantly, we have a different mindset. Now that we have worked enough to buy a house and what we need to fill it, we use hard work, creativity, thrift, organisation, management, responsibility and a sense of purpose to maintain and conserve what we've worked for.

The shade structure came down, salvias and old herbs removed and the first new plants went in.

Gone are the days when I went out and worked for a living. Now I'm happy to stay here and work to maintain the life we have built. This was yesterday:

3.30am - 10am: 
I was up and dressed, checked the weather radar, emails and comments. 
Read a few pages of The Guardian and some Mary Oliver poems. 
Talked to Gracie, rubbed her tummy and organised some yarn and knitting needles. 
Fed Gracie outside and let the chickens out.  Looked around the garden, took some cuttings from my blue salvia and potted them up.
Jamie arrived at 6.45. I talked to him, cooked breakfast and tidied the kitchen.
Made the bed.
Sat on the back verandah, listened to Macca on the radio and talked to Hanno about the new garden.
Hanno started planting out the parsley seedlings from the bush house as well as thyme, basil and oregano bought at the local co-op yesterday. These are the first of our new season plantings.
Organised the spices and nuts that I bought at the co-op on Friday.
Made a rye bread starter that I'll probably use tomorrow.
Made a banana cake.
When the cake was baked, we had morning tea.

Very moist banana cake with flaked almond topping.
Rye starter sitting on the kitchen bench collecting airborne yeasts.
From the co-op - black mustard seeds, Madras curry powder, flaked almonds and celery seeds.

Before noon:
Watched the rain fall from the back verandah.
Blanched cabbage leaves for the cabbage rolls we were having for lunch. Left them to drain and cool.
Made pork filling for cabbage rolls.
Started writing this blog post.
Helped Jamie with his spelling - he was working through the Spelling Eggs program on the computer.
Made and cooked lunch.

Cleaned the kitchen.
Iced a piece of banana cake for Jamie to take home for school lunches.
Packed a serving of cabbage rolls, herb and onion mashed potato and gravy for Sunny to have for her dinner at home.
Spoke to a friend on the phone.
Knitted in front of the TV watching recorded programs. I usually watched recorded TV because I can fast forward and ignore the advertising.
Jamie went home.
Checked laundry supplies to see if anything is running low.

Checked if there was anything needed in the laundry. This stick is a spurtle I bought from an antique shop a few years ago in Glen Innes, a country town which hosts a popular Scottish Festival. It's probably stirred a lot of porridge over the years, but here it's always been my soaking stick.

Made tea and toast and watched the TV news.
End of day.  Went to sleep around 7pm, was up again at 10ish, messaged with a friend on the computer while I read the papers.
Added recipes to my Paprika app. Looked at some webcams. Back to bed just after midnight.

Up at 4am.
Today I'll clean both bathrooms but this morning will be devoted to ironing which I allowed to build up over the past few hot weeks. I hope to get through it all and put it away today. Lunch is leftovers, I hope to knit and prune plants this afternoon.
And now I'll publish this post so you know I'm still here, still working, still smiling and still feeling grateful for all we have.

I hope you have a wonderful week ahead.  💝