Footy, Fruit Salad and Ratatouille

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This week I was ridiculously excited to discover some fruit on trees that I had previously thought were purely ornamental. We are now the proud owners of three plum trees and an apricot tree! All are full of fruit so now I just have to hope that we get enough sunshine to ripen them and that we manage to harvest them before the birds get to them. Apricots have to ripen on the tree so it will be a race to see who gets there first. I guess we can try netting the trees if things become too much of a contest!

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Here are the baby apricots with their furry speckled skins ^ and below the hard baby plums with their shiny skins – a lovely addition to our little orchard of fruit trees. We also have oranges, lemons, limes, mandarins, grapefruit, apple and pear trees, with blueberries and raspberries planted too. Almost a fruit salad…….

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There are so many things flowering at the moment I almost discover something new every day. Luckily some of the plants that had died back during winter have sprung forth and are now filling in the flower beds and blocking out the weeds and roses are tumbling over the walls and spilling out over their pots.

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The next plan for the garden is a large hydrangea hedge – this has mostly come about as we couldn’t secure the services of a bobcat driver. We have phoned a dozen people over a couple of months to no avail. They are all super busy as most of them have been contracted to help with the building of the new road. The whole area has benefited from the works with lots of local houses being rented to RMS contractors and the local pubs reaping the rewards of hundreds of men not wanting to cook their own dinners Monday to Friday. The food shops are sold out of pies and sandwiches by 1.30 in the afternoon and business is booming in Berry! It is the upside of what appears to be a huge scar on the beautiful countryside. It will look better once it’s finished and landscaped and there is no doubting the fact that it will improve the drive to and from Sydney.

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So now, instead of trying to flatten some of the side garden, we are going to plant it with what will (hopefully) eventually become a thick wide hedge of white mophead hydrangeas. As none of the local nurseries have enough I am going to give a mail order nursery a go. It feels like a weird concept – sending mature plants in the mail – but apparently they have a great track record getting them to their customers in one piece so fingers crossed people!!

Its been a big week of sport with the biggest thing being the Rugby World Cup Final featuring the All Blacks v Wallabies. It was the culmination of a great competition and we all got up at 2.30am excited that we may witness the fall of the mighty AB’s with our amazingly energetic boys seemingly on a high. It is now history of course that despite a valiant comeback in the 2nd half we failed to bring Bill home but the boys can hold their heads high and we have a great few years coming up if their performance is anything to go by.

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Yesterday was the race that stops the nation and despite the mist and drizzle we got frocked up and drove out to the Nowra Turf Club for an afternoon of race watching, betting and a few glasses of bubbly. All three local Raine & Horne offices come together for the afternoon and it’s nice to gradually get to know the staff at the other offices too. The day ended rather sadly with a horse being spooked after finishing a race and running into a fence throwing the jockey and breaking it’s leg. Paramedics were still treating the jockey who had not moved as we were leaving and goodness knows what will happen to the horse too. It is definitely the “other” side of racing that we tend to forget when we are all enjoying ourselves, caught up in the colour and fun of the day.

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We had a lovely weekend with our friends Paul and Emma coming to visit The Meadow. We took them to all the local haunts and the sun shone despite dire weather warnings. It’s hard to tell if it’s going to be 28 degrees or 18 lately but we’ve had a nice little bit of rain so I’m not having to water the garden at least.

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So it’s basically happy days in The Meadow except for the differing philosophy between Cam and I about pests and death. I am basically a live and let live person. My belief is that every life has a value however small the creature. Cam on the other hand has strong ideas about what should be allowed to live in the vicinity of our home. High on the list of things he hates are Myna birds and rats and mice. We have native Australian Noisy Miners which are deemed OK but the Indian Mynas are a definite no no. His love of birds ends with these introduced birds that take over an area and drive the little native birds away. Somehow, in talking to some locals he found a guy that makes Myna traps and after completing the transaction the old fashioned way with a slab of beer we are now the proud owner of said contraption. Luring the little devils in with dog biscuits is apparently the way and on inspection the next day we could see that something was in there.

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Before – The Temptation….!!

Not a Myna as it turns out but a little rat. It was actually quite a cute one if there is such a thing and as it stuck as much of its body through the bars as it could attempting to escape, my thoughts turned to the film ‘Ratatouille’ and I was a gonner. Cammo stuck to his guns and little Ratty was no more by the time I got home from work. I didn’t ask for details. For me, as long as they stay outside I am happy to let them do their thing – it is their territory after all, but for Cam any rat is a rat too many when it’s on his property 😦

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