We breathe a sigh of relief as another summer and fire season drifts into the background. There is a crispness to the air and the colours of Autumn are beginning to surround us again.
The fire is going and I now have to drag the little red trailer behind the "ride on" to collect wood as we have moved the wood shed up to where the horses used to be. I'm hoping this will just be a twice weekly chore but it will depend on how cold it gets.
Harry our wood man has already delivered 8m of red gum so the shed is chockers - for now.
I love the smell of the gum trees when their leaves are moist and the hint of smoke from our chimney as we return home from our morning walk with Harry and Tully.
The dogs both turned 12 towards the end of last year. Harry is driving me batty today because he keeps either banging on the double doors to come in or to go out. It is quite violent and you can't ignore him as he will just persist. Senility.
The four new chookies are well settled in and laying 3 (sometimes 4) eggs a day. Little One, the last remaining rescue chook, is doing really well and has put on weight in recent months which is fantastic. I particularly want her to have a long (3-4 years is good for a chook)happy life given the start she had. She bosses the newbies around and has a real air of independence.
One of the newbies thought the couch on our verandah was her nest when she first began laying. Sue filmed her one day going through the ritual of laying an egg. It took about 30 minutes of turning around and sitting and turning around to end with her tucking her head between her legs to drag the egg forward so she could sit on it comfortably. It was such a treat to watch.
The veggie boxes have been a great success with tomatoes being abundant as well as silverbeet, beetroot and lettuce. We planted cauliflower too early and have had slugs and the capsicum are just starting to turn red. I planted the pumpkin in a corner with not enough sun so nothing produced and the zucchinis have been few but given everyone else had a glut I'm not complaining. I have an exercise book I am going to write in to keep a track of what worked and what didn't for future. Next weekend we'll start to pull things out and feed the soil.
I'm starting to record the birds around the area via the Australian Birds App. So far I have listed the Black-chinned Honeyeater, Eastern Yellow Robin, Grey Fantail, Masked Lapwing (they are good fox spotters), Scarlet Robin, Superb Fairy-wren, White-throated Treecreeper and the White-winged Chough. All of these are either around the house or down Sawpit Gully Road on our walking route.
Sue and I have been training for our Queen Charlotte Pass walk in NZ. We have walked some lovely sections of the Goldfields Track and last week we walked to the Glenlyon Store and back. We had an excellent lunch of Veggie burger and fries (shared) before walking the 8.5 km home. It was tiring but good training.