Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Early morning walk.

Waikuku Beach. 7.30am.

Monday, 27 April 2009

A windy day at home on the farm.

The weather is CRAZY outside today - a howling Norwester is blowing. Matt has the car and our phone isn't working so I am truly stranded. A friend came round for lunch though and so I spent the morning inside baking.

After the hot cross buns last weekend I thought I'd try some more bread baking and made myself my first white loaf...

From this:

...to a lovely warm loaf... served with a wild rice salad (containing pumpkin from my very own garden - a nice touch methinks).

And if that wasn't impressive enough for one morning's work, I russled up a ginger crunch slice for dessert.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Better late than never...

I know that technically I was supposed to do this last weekend, but I never got round to it, and didn't have half the ingredients I needed so I postponed it to this weekend.

I bring you...hot cross buns:

Well, actually they're Jo Seagar's hot cross buns recipe.

Not bad for a first attempt, but not as spicy or fruity as I like, so next time I'll increase in both those areas. Also, my crosses were a bit of a failure - I made them too runny and couldn't be bothered correcting my mistake, so they are all sort of washed out, but I'm not a huge fan of the cross anyway.

'Twas lovely to sit down with a warm bun and a cup of tea this afternoon though.

Monday, 13 April 2009

Easter Monday outing

The three of us set out on a North Canterbury outing today - here's Boo with the wind in her ears and of course with no idea of our destination, yet excited at just being on the road.

This photo also shows side of the Citroen in all it's splendour, unlike how it looks now (but more about that soon).

First stop was Gore Bay where we found our perfect bach:

Oh so tiny, but oh so cool. I especially like the way there is absolutely no garden, just an expanse of bare lawn.

Then it was on to the Cheviot Domain where we took Boo for wander among the trees;

..and explored what's left of the foundations of the Mansion House which once stood there:

Again, doesn't our car look lovely? Unfortunately on the way home we chose to stop in at the Rangiora New World, where the dork parked beside us pulled out completely unaware of our presence. Boo was stunned, as were we.

Oh dear oh dear, our lovely car. The scrape in the rear panel prevents the back of the car from lowering with the hydropneumatic suspension so we've had to take it off completely which makes it look even worse. Fortunately we have insurance. Unfortunately for the guy who did it, he doesn't.

Back on the craft horse

After a short break from the craft thing while we went to the USA and I started this new locum (which is only for two weeks and is going pretty well), I am back on the knitting horse....

My bro and his girlfriend traveled through South America last year and picked up a huge reel of yarn for me - I can't remember the exact composition but it's got some alpaca in it, and it's really fine - maybe even 2ply?

Anyways, I've decided to start with a new scarf using this Rowan pattern:

So far so good - it is lovely to knit with. Hopefully I'll have it rattled out before it gets much colder.

Speaking of the weather- there's one little lady in our house who's pretty happy that it's cold enough for the fire again:

Sunday, 12 April 2009

Easter loveliness

We were blessed with gorgeous weather this weekend, enabling us to get out and enjoy what is possibly the last of the warmth.

We took Boo to the dog park with the best view in town, only to be reminded by the snow on the alps in the background that winter is coming...

And we followed it up with lunch at the Governor's Bay Hotel, which is our new favourite place, again because of the view - so lovely on a warm autumn day.

Before leaving town I stole a few flowers from my mum's garden, to brighten up our bedroom.

I absolutely adore fuschias, but they generally don't last in water for more than five minutes, so I captured this photo to remind how wonderful they were when I find them wilted in the morning:

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Acceptance we'll be here for a while yet and therefore preparations for winter......

Yes, it's taken a while for us to really accept it, but with nothing on the horizon (we haven't managed to get as far as even making an offer) it looks like we'll be staying in the country for this winter. We do have one house left on our list which we're kind of drawing out as long as possible, cos when we've crossed that one of we've got nothing left. Hmm.

Anyway, it's been a bit chilly of late, so this weekend we borrowed a trailer and went and carted a couple of loads of firewood....at the back door....

...in the shed...

..and in the laundry (which is not as weird as it sounds as our laundry is outside in a kind of shed - it is too dark to photograph well).

I don't think we've got enough until spring, but there's plenty for now.

And in another snippet of news that I am immensely proud of, I can now jog for 40 minutes. This is actually a mammoth achievement for me, as I have never been able to go for more than about 300 metres without collapsing in a wheezing, groaning, heaving heap. And it's taken me a ridiculously long time to get from that to where I am now, I'm not even going to say cos it took so long. No major plans for marathons (or even 10km runs) for now - I just like the idea of going for a half hour run a couple of times a week! Brilliant!

Happenings this week.

The grapes in Waipara have ripened which means all the vineyards up there are flat tack this week harvesting. Being a lady of leisure I offered my manual labour services to Black Estate for a couple of days.

I had forgotten the joy of doing a hard day's work (and my body had too) - oh my back! my knees! my cut finger! Boo is exhausted too, as she spent the days playing with Digby - she is a completely different dog when she's tired, so much less demanding.

It's back to the real world for the next couple of weeks with a two week locum starting Monday, fortunately it coincides with the end of daylight savings so the mornings won't be so hard.