Friday, 12 August 2016

My experiment with Golden Oyster Mushrooms!

I love to grow things! I don't necessarily have a green thumb but a certain tenacity when it comes to putting my mind to a new project in the garden. Now, to mushrooms.
I have had mushroom boxes for years with great success. I recently bought some mushroom boards that sadly were a failure with the boards growing mould instead of mushrooms! Mr Fothergill's sent me, as a replacement, two All-in-one growing kits of Golden Oyster Mushrooms and I'm hooked!
You simply fill the box up with water (I weighted it down as it has a habit of floating) and then left it for 24 hours. You tip out the water but keep the top of the box moist with a water bottle (I do have really good rainwater) and then I only had to wait a short time and bumps started appearing. Et voila! They were beautiful bright yellow oyster mushrooms. I simply enjoyed the whole process and am now looking for recipes to best show off my newly acquired passion! I am going to pick my first "crop" today and can already see small clusters that I hope will keep growing. They are a little costly to buy but the result is fantastic!

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Lightbulb Moment!

What am I waiting for?

Now is the only time that we have.

So, I choose now ...

Monday, 3 December 2012

There’s a change in the air ….

There's a change in the air. A change in the way we view food, where it comes from and the health of the animal and the impact that food has on our lives. More than ever we want to look after our home, our planet, our budget and our health and we want to live a life of sustainability that embraces all these factors. Changing habits, from mob based actions to habits that nourish us and choices that sustain the world that we want to create, is the key. I grew up with the typical 1950's diet of the day. White bread and butter, mutton every which way five nights a week, the veggies boiled and boiled and plenty of mashed potato (sorry Mum but that's how it was!). Chicken only on special occasions and casseroles in winter served with rice (1 cup serves 4). Salad consisted of a sliced tomato, a piece of cheese, some iceberg lettuce, some tinned beetroot to accompany the cold meats. All served with buttered bread. Breakfast was porridge in winter, Weet-bix in summer (we loved to get the Weet-bix cards and absolutely not allowed to open the next box until the last Week-bix was eaten in the old box). I have a memory of my father sitting on a stool cooking toast in the open door of the Aga … we got an electric toaster when we gave up the generator and got the electricity hooked up. Mum cooked lovely slices and cakes (all white sugar) and lots of apples and oranges. 

Today, our diet is multi-cultural in nature. We still have the chops/sausages and veggies a few times a week but we also have curries and stir-frys and the amount of fruit and veggies we eat is amazing. I have gradually, through reading, realised that a lot of the food that we were eating was making us fat. In my home, sugar and processed foods and white bread/rice/flour have gradually been replaced with brown alternatives where palatable, and we have all but stopped eating sugar. Evolution happens incredibly slowly. We don't have the triggers in place to indicate when we are full when we eat sugar. As a result we eat far more than we really require and we're doing it from a really young age. Obesity is a massive epidemic in Australia and the developed nations and sugar and processed foods are the reason. I am making every effort to change our diet to reflect this. Also, I just want to eat real food. Food that is made on a farm, not by a chemist. Food that I have grown, or by locals and know that no chemicals have been used in its production. I want my family to be as healthy as possible so that we can get the most out of life. 

Mum was a product of her generation, as I am. She was a child of the depression and thrift was the order of the day. Many of the embedded habits that I grew up with I highly value and have willingly passed onto my children. I can’t bare waste and I love to make do. I have a complicated relationship with my desire for abundance. I don’t desire the feeling of scarcity but it is my friend. It is what I know and my desire for abundance was born from this.  Even when I have all the abundance that I desire I know that a small part of me will want to make do in some part of my life, purely from habit.

There is a change in the air. My family's diet is reflecting this change and in so many other parts of my life there is a shift happening.

I can viscerally feel change coming … and it's coming fast.

Monday, 19 November 2012

I can taste next year ....

Sometimes I simply lie in bed at night, or in the morning when I first wake up and just dream about next year. I walk in the garden and walk through the house in my dream and it is just as I imagine it to be. I am sitting outside on my new garden bench having a coffee under my new pergola. I can look up and see the blue of the wisteria flowers falling from the beams and look down at the dappled sunlight making patterns on the pavers. I have a matching bench on the verandah with bright cussions and a lovely black pot with reeds below the dragonfly wall art. It all looks so lovely.

Dreams are very powerful tools to help us get to where we want to go. Never underestimate the power of dreams, they are our subconcious hard at work making our desires come true. If you are excited about something and put all your desire and enthusiasm into it then the universe will knock itself out showing you how to make it happen. Your job is to be in alignment with what you want. Believe in it and it will manifest (Thanks Abraham).

If you want a happy life, then paint a picture and affirm that 'All is Well' and watch things change.  Watch you change! and watch others change around you.

Life is really simple, people tend to make it so complicated.  It doesn't have to be.
If you choose a life with passion and purpose and joy and enthusiasm and love - then life is easy!

... ... ... This is how the world works.

... ... ... ... ... ...  This is how my world works and its a wonderful world!!


Wednesday, 10 October 2012

15 Minutes ... ... ...

It is said that you can do anything that you don't like for 15 minutes.

I am pondering this as my beautiful garden is full of weeds and all the shrubs which normally look beautiful at this time of year are untrimmed from winter and valiantly putting forward new growth despite my lack of care. A whole term of school (10 weeks) were spent treading water with work mid-week and the weekends spent in Sydney watching our son play rugby and little maintenance was achieved on Moronga. The following school holidays were spent helping Simon on the place and a wonderul visit to see Mum in Brisbane. No worries ... I am now implementing the 15 minute rule!

For the last 3 days I have spent far more than 15 minutes in the garden (with my little poddy lamb, unnamed as yet and of course Claude, my Labrador) at my side. Once the weeds are gone Simon can bring me some hay and I'll put some sheep manure on the beds and cover them up! We are expecting a frost this weekend so I haven't started on the vegie garden as yet. Next trip to Dubbo on the 3rd November I'll pick up some punnets. I truly love my vegie garden as I love to cook with the freshest of produce and its great just ducking outside and picking dinner! Once everything is back to normal I am going to try to spend 15 mins every day in the garden. Keeping on top of things is easy when you start from finished!

After having so many weekends away it is amazing that we are spending the entire month at home! 

How I love being at home!

Great news! I have paid the second last education bill on my Visa. Every weekly direct debit that goes in from now on is working towards my Cheese Room and Home Butchery Centre. Simon thinks that I do everything with smoke and mirrors! How true!

On the cheese front - I have started doing some serious research ... there are so many clever people on the internet. I want to start to add some of these to my blogsite as well so that I have their advice at hand. Another thing to learn.

Once again ... just enjoying it all!

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

I love the word village ...

The word village is one of my favourite words. It conjures up wonderful feelings of inclusion. Life lived at a more leasurely pace, witnessed by people who genuinly care with the edges blurred between family and friends.

When we holidayed in France in 2008 I fell in love with the french villages, particularly the way they utilised their landscape to create wonderful food ... slow food permiculture they call it now ... I just call it beautiful food in a beautiful setting where the desire to create delicious farmstead food is created from produce grown within cooee of the farm gate. Where home and family intertwine with the environment and culture is shared in a simple meal after a hard day working in the vines.

We were there in September, when harvest was in full tilt and seemingly everywhere we looked there was abundance. Every fence (hedgerow) sheltered animals that they later cooked into wonderful casseroles with berries made into pies and each season would bring a different delight. Each region had its own personality and this was particularly evident in the cooking with variations literally from village to village. It was a wonderful experience and one that gave me enormous insight into the world that I want to create.

"Moronga" has been my home for 24 years now and I can't think of a better place to begin this adventure. The house is large and we haven't done much to it in the last 15 years. The cattle yards and sheep yards and really all the infrastructure has had no love or money spent on it for years and whilst I wouldn't call it neglected ... it's easy to see where the money has not been spent. We have lovingly put our two children through boarding school and I can say with passion that if we have been able to do it … then anybody can.  It has simply required planning .. scheming .. scraping and generally going without for a really long time but now we are almost there. Our eldest son is in Year 12 and the last bill has arrived to be paid. It has been a roller-coaster of wonderful experiences and we have been so thankful that we have been able to achieve one of our biggest goals which is to give both our children a good start in life ... however ... now it's our turn and I'm loving building the picture of what the next 30 years of our lives will look like.  Its thrilling to me that I can choose my future and make it happen.

All is well in my world.