Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Summer Berries - the Sun must be coming

After a spate of cold, dreary, wet weather (what the Scots  would call "dreek") finally today, the sun has come out.  And my strawberries have started to come out too! We have picked the odd one or two, but today, this is what I was able to gather :-)

Also harvested, 2 x artichokes and a lettuce.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Problems with free motion quilting

I try to quilt, I don't really have a lot of time at the moment - what with the house, the wedding and more!

My sister told me all about "Quilters Gloves" which have grippy bits on the palms and fingers, so that you can  manipulate your quilt easily under the walking foot, or when free motion quilting.  These gloves go for about $16NZ....and you can buy the same thing in Mitre 10 in the Gardening section, for about $2.99!

Well, at my local quilters shop in Rangiora they advised that I buy some tacky placemat stuff, which we would use in our campervan to stop cups rattling about etc, and to cut it into rounds and use those.  The benefit being you don't have to take off gloves etc to change threads, thread needles...

Wow, what a great piece of advice! works brilliantly

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

An Eggbound Chook

For the past year or so we have had 7 chooks (one of our 8 having died from unknown causes).  Happily they have scratched in the garden, and chased the dog for her bones, and followed me round as I tend our veges.  And, every day they have given us a bounty of beautiful eggs.

Until....a few days ago one sat at the bottom of their house, feathers all fluffed up and looking sickly.

I checked her over, very compliant when I handled her, very (ahem) large distended rear end. Pulsing rear end.  UH OH! eggbound was my diagnosis.

The internet gave lots of advice, some of which I was loathe to follow.  Do I really want to risk breaking the egg and all the ones backed up behind it? any physical work on her was out of the question.

Eggs are produced in a real "factory line"!  there are about 5 or so in production within the chook at any one time, from the one ready to be laid, all covered in shell, back to ones without shell, smaller and smaller up inside the chook.  When one gets stuck, all the others then exacerbate the problem.

The method I ended up trying was the "warm bath".  The idea being that the muscles of the chook relax and release the egg, hopefully.

I filled up a large bucket with warm water, popped in my chook, where she promptly hunkered down, and put a cardboard lid on top with a small stone to keep it in place.  I left her for 20 mins as instructed by the internet.   Then took her out.  She just flopped on the deck and lay there for some time.

Eventually Mark took pity on her and dispatched her with a carving knife.

A sad, sad, day for a lovely hen.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

It's a big secret

Mark has given me strict instructions!  no photos, news or otherwise of our new house, currently being built north of Amberley.

At our wedding there will be a big reveal, so you will all just have to wait *smiley face*

In the meantime, I have been busy laying out a vege bed, planting an orchard, madly putting in flower beds that will hopefully look good at the wedding, and watering madly!

We have worked on the garden every weekend for the past 3 months or so, which is why you have not heard much from me since July.  Gee, is it that long!  Looking back at when I last posted, it was, yes, July.