Busy Bees

2016-11-18-09-47-29The roof has finally been painted and matches the new extension and as per usual when you do some new work it just makes all the pre existing stuff look awful. The existing house walls and windows will be repainted early in the New Year and then we will be officially DONE!! We will paint the chook shed and the wood shed ourselves but the professional guys with all the proper equipment will do the house. We have some old wood on the windows that is rotting and the finial on the garage was falling apart necessitating a new one so we never seem to get on top of everything. I spent some time painting my faithful versailles planter boxes that I bought 25 years ago in the soft grey and have planted them up with some pretty cordylines for the back deck and am now painting the stools for the ‘bar’ until I can afford the ones I love!! One step at a time Suz……2016-11-22-09-24-13We had our first batch of hot weather last week and as dusk fell on Friday after a 34 degree day we had some rather unwelcome visitors. Hundreds of thousands of flying ants arrived from goodness knows where and the birds went crazy chasing them all for a tasty snack. The ones that survived the birds were then attracted to our lights and every window and door in the house was covered in little black bugs. It has taken me days of sweeping them up and yet there are still a few survivors managing to annoy me on a daily basis. I suppose the heat activated them from their dormancy – I have no idea what function they serve in nature except to feed the birds but they are a pain in the bum.

Thanks to my friend Leigh who owns a couple of lovely shops in Berry ( Scullys and Bedroom Bliss)  I was alerted to the fact that there is a strawberry farm just down the road from me. I had seen the signs with pictures of strawberries on the highway but had always imagined I would have to go and actually pick them like we used to back in my home county of Hampshire in England. I was pleasantly surprised when I turned into the driveway to see a cute little hut all set up with produce from the farm and a fridge full of buckets of beautiful red strawberries. An honour system for payment involving a chute down which you put the correct money and voila you have a perfect little set up which means people don’t have to constantly man the stall !! The strawberries were outstanding, tasting like the strawberries of old and bursting with sweetness and flavour. They were quickly put to work on a custard tart!

The tart didn’t last long with the boys working their butts off in the garden painting the pergola, a tough job in the heat and with years of lichen on the bricks and posts.Now it is all fresh and white we can continue to wrap the wisteria around it with hopes of it dripping beautiful lilac flowers in Spring and Autumn.

In nature of a more appealing kind we found this little fella wandering around on the ground seeming to hide behind logs and looking a little lost. He hadn’t quite got the hang of flying yet. He could launch himself from a height and manage to fly but didn’t have the thrust to get off the ground. As we were a bit worried about potential attackers we popped on the heavy duty gloves (they sure can nip) and put him up on a branch near Mum and Dad. How cute are they when they are little!!

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Our avocado tree has survived the winter winds but is still basically a stalk with a few lateral twigs, a rather long way away from a tree laden with heavy perfect avocados ripe for the picking! They take at least 3 years to fruit apparently so we will have to exercise some patience (not known for having TOO much of that) and in the meantime we buy at least 4 a week at varying horrific prices and find they are either too hard or we wait too long for them to ripen and then they are too soft. This is a situation I think most Aussies would be all too familiar with……

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