A few days here ... in photos

5 September 2017
Over the past few days our time has been spent in a steady, slow stream of work here in our home. Meals have been cooked, cleaning done, drinks made, morning teas enjoyed and the vegetable garden work has been finished. I've also been reading Gay Bilson's magnificent Plenty, Digressions on Food. It's such a good book and as I read it I realise I'd love to sit down and have a good talk with this talented cook and writer. She, like me, is a bit of a recluse now so I doubt our paths will cross any time soon. 

Meanwhile, out in the backyard, I reconfigured the back verandah to move the table and chairs back into the shade.  The garden is now fertilised, watered and mulched. We've netted our thriving blueberry bushes to save the coming crop from local birds who actively look for berries. Tomatoes and some herbs have been removed and with the onset of warmer weather, it looks like we were just in time. Now all we need is rain. The tanks are almost empty.

I thought it would be a nice change to show photos instead of write about what we've been doing. So here are a bunch of photos, taken over the past week, that show a small part of what we do here on a regular basis.

Jamie was here yesterday and we made brownies for his dad for Father's Day.  These were just about to go into the oven.
I hand-washed the cake pan and my compost bucket. I bought both these from one of my favourite shops - Odgers and McClelland Exchange Store in Nundle. Check out the link, I'm sure you'll be delighted.

Herbs picked and sitting in water awaiting lunch prep.

 Ginger was harvested ...
... and made into another batch of ginger beer.

A few days ago I made up some donut dough so I could have a batch of small frozen Berliners ready for cooking in the freezer.  Hanno loves these.

I freeze them on trays then package them, four at a time, in freezer bags.

We're still eating seasonal strawberries from the local farm. 

A recent avocado, cucumber and tomato salad. I use my flavoured vinegar as a dressing.

Yesterday's lunch would have been a familiar sight on many 1950s kitchen tables. Cold pickled pork, mashed potato with herbs, fried cabbage, sliced home grown tomatoes and pickles. It was delicious.

This is where we have morning tea. I moved the table and chairs back a bit so they're out of the sun now. Soon we'll move to the front verandah for our tea as it's much cooler there during summer.

 And outside, Grace was on duty watching the rain forest for a bush turkey that comes in every day.
 
A bale of mulch ready to be laid on the gardens. 

Tomatoes harvested with cayenne peppers and banana pepper seedlings. All have been planted now.

 The garden working bee in full swing. 

 Some of these herbs have been thinned out to make room for the peppers.

And those of you who are following the saga of the Cecile Brunner rose, here it is yesterday with many new shoots.  If we get a bit of rain, I think it will be a bumper year for these tiny roses. The small bush at the front is a salvia.

36 comments

  1. Good morning Rhonda,
    Thank-you for sharing my friend. "Walking" around your garden with you is a complete joy and pleasure. I love industrious backyards. I get "lost" in mine - out for a 10 minute job and back in 2 hours. Where did that time go? Then I go out again!
    Thank-you for all the wonderful pictures. Cheers Jo

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  2. Love your photos Rhonda. Jamie has grown so much and looks quite tall too. Love the look of his brownies.
    The Berliners reminded me of the Oliebol's my husband's family make every New Years Eve.
    It would be so relaxing sitting outside for morning tea before the day gets too hot. We are still waiting for some warmth here in Melbourne. Very, very cold, wet and windy again this week.
    Your chickens look so healthy and I love the variety you have too.
    Lunch looks very familiar to me. Mum and Dad serve meals just like it. It's how I remember them with homemade chutneys and various other sauces. Cold silverside was common growing up too. They haven't changed which is great and our kids love it.
    Have a wonderful day.
    Kylie

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  3. You've been busy, Rhonda. The garden looks so nice.

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  4. Banana peppers sound interesting, Rhonda. You and Hanno have been busy but of course you couldn't have done it all without the help of Gracie :-) It is certainly heating up and we had 26C yesterday so it would have been hotter for you. I hope summer isn't too hot but I won't hold my breath.

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  5. I enjoyed your life in pictures. Jamie has sure grown up fast!

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  6. Rhonda, could you possibly post your recipe for The Berliners when you have a spare moment. They look great & would be a good standby to have in the freezer. Thank you, Ann (Calico Ann).

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  7. Thanks for the website link for your compost bucket - we are going to be "furnishing" a caravan soon and their enamel plate ware etc may just be the ticket.

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  8. Yes, that's a beautiful compost bucket that you have. Jamie looks so cute with the homemade brownies. What a fun grandma you are! I never thought of frying cabbage. I've always boiled it. I'll have to try that tonight.

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  9. I bet Jamie's dad enjoyed those brownies :) You have been busy in the garden, Rhonda. It's looking good! I need to do some more work before I'm ready to plant for Spring. Meg:)

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  10. lovely looking at your photo's I too would love for you to share the recipe for berliners, as they look so interesting

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  11. Lovely photos Rhonda, I love the glimpse into your lives! Please do share your recipes for the brownies and the Berliners ( i've not heard of these before). Jamie is growing up fast, nice to see he also enjoys cooking with you.

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  12. Great photos Rhonda. Love seeing your girls.

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  13. I too would love the Berliners. I'm glad that you have the warm weather, we are struggling with a very cold 12deg. crafty gab

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  14. Such a wonderful post with all the pictures and being able to see the special haven that you and Hanno have created for yourselves.
    It all looks so peaceful & calming. I love your verandah and your warm/cozy nook where you have your tea! It makes me want to come sit with you for a while.;) But that would mean a trip across the ocean!:) So I will just enjoy your pictures instead. Gracie looks like she works so hard and has such a big job keeping busy as your guard dog! How adorable she is!
    I hope you do more posts with lots of pictures like this one. It is fabulous!
    Enjoy your wonderful haven!
    ~SUE

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  15. Still love reading your blog Rhonda, you keep me motivated & like you I feel like a bit of a hermit too which some people don't approve of but I'm happier this way as I get older. Terrarossa.

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  16. A lovely stroll through your world - thanks for sharing all the photos. And, as always, I wish I was eating any or all of that food right now! Beth in MN

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  17. I love the look of those Berliners Rhonda and what a great idea to have them ready to cook from the freezer. Doughnuts are such a treat. I'll check your blog to see if you have put the recipe up somewhere. I think I will invest in one of the Compost buckets as well. It is really nice looking at your photos, they tell an interesting story. Best wishes,

    Pauline

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  18. Thanks for sharing these vibrant images that capture how creative your home life is, Rhonda! It's so lovely to see.

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  19. your garden is amazing!
    we had rain & storms here last night, it is so dry! yesterday was up in the 30s here, Spring is coming on with a vengence!
    wow Jamie is getting big! glad he likes to cook with you!
    good onya Gracie! the little scallywag!
    thanx for sharing
    selina from kilkivan qld

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  20. That picture of Jamie reminds me of how I loved to help bake as a little boy - it conjured p some forgotten memories.

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  21. Ooh that brownie looks nice. The pictures are just a delight. Gracie us so cute I hope her destructive antics are decreasing. My Westie is 6 now and is now sort of trustworthy around things in the house. We had some disasters when he was a puppy including my mobile phone. My fault left it sitting on the floor.

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  22. I love seeing your week in pics! Thanks for sharing.

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  23. I loved your photo post. My aunt used to make Berliners for New Year's Eve. I miss that. I do not allow hot oil in my kitchen so I have never made any. Your garden must keep you very busy. It looks like a big one. And I adore Gracie:)

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  24. I've looked at your blog whenever you have a new post for a long time but never had the time to comment.. I've just recently retired and plan to comment from now on..It's lovely to see your week in photos... I love the fact you have a fan on the wall on the outside...In the UK that is never needed :):) Your latest book does not seem to be on Amazon kindle for me to buy....I have the other on my kindle Down to Earth which I love and refer to often... I'm hoping your new one will be available soon... May

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  25. Thank you for your wonderful posts. Love, love Gracie and her antics. I too have terriers (one Cairn and one mixed). They can be quite mischievous at all times. Love the products show in the Odgers and McClelland Exchange Store but, unfortunately they do not ship to the US and I am still trying to find a store here that compares.

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  26. Thank you so much for generously sharing the world you have created behind your gate. I love it! And I love how you have encouraged your readers (like me!) to pursue a delightful, meaningful, beautiful life at home.

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  27. Hi Rhonda, I must say firstly I love your new photo. Sounds shallow I guess, but I feel like I know you so it's nice to see your photos. Jamie is growing up so quickly, handsome little fellow isn't he. Pickled pork was often on the table when I was growing up (56 yo) and I still cook it and so do my adult kids. I adore it, I think it's much nicer than ham. Especially with pickles. Loved seeing all these pics, have a lovely day, Kathryn.

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    1. Thanks Kathryn. I went out yesterday and had lippy on so I took the opportunity to take a new pic. :- )

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  28. I somehow managed to delete my yesterday's comment! It went something like this - it was precisely 4 deg C at the time of reading yours yesterday morning with snow flurries in the air in Ballarat. How I would love to spend a little more time outdoors like you, it looks heavenly. We are looking forward to some sun soon. Your young man is growing up handsomely indeed. Your life looks very content. Enjoy and take care.

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  29. Love your tea table Rhonda. Starting to explore ways to make our home function better to suit our small family's needs. We have a 16 month old and have noticed our needs have changed so much since he was born that am always looking for inspiring new ways to make our home functional. Thank-you for the inspiration!

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    1. I hear you. Needs change all the time and it's wise to keep making small changes as you move ahead to facilitate life at home as you grow and develop. I read your latest post and will address those issues in a post this week.

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  30. BTW, love the new pic. Very glamorous 😊

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  31. What a wonderful on-purpose life you're living. I have my final round of chemo tomorrow, then surgery will be planned. I cannot wait to be declared cancer free so that I can begin a purpose filled life.

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    1. Good luck with your treatments, Laura. xx

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  32. I'm intrigued by your compost bucket. I wonder how to you make a compost with it. Please share more here. Thank, Rhonda for always sharing your love with us.

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    1. I'm old school. I carry the fruit and vegetable scraps out to the compost heap in the bucket.

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