Friday, November 28, 2008
Here are some photos I took this afternoon before the heavens opened up and dumped a storm on us. The black sky tells the story!
The John Deere header belongs to very good friends of ours who had already finished their harvest and came to help us get ours off - thanks Jason, Scott and Paul! With the changeable weather we've been having lately, we decided to get harvest finished as quick as possible.
It's raining steadily now, so it looks like we'll have to stop for a day or two.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Isn't he the cutest kitten ever?!!
This is Squirt. He's not feeling the best at the moment. On Sunday he was holding one of his back legs up to walk, and then on Monday it all swelled up. I was thinking the worst, that he'd either broken it trying to jump out of his box or he'd hurt it wrestling with his brothers. Squirt is tiny compared to the others.
I took him to the vet where they did an x-ray and confirmed that there was no broken bones. But he suspected an infection or abscess in his leg. The infection was syringed out as much as possible and now Squirt is on antibiotics for the next 14 days. He's still holding his leg up to walk, but the swelling has reduced a lot since Monday.
As you can see from the photo he is thoroughly spoiled. He's got a nice soft quilt to lay around in which is up on the lounge so that he's away from his two rough brothers.
Squirt is supposed to be going to good friends of ours, but if he's going to be high maintenance, then I think they'd be better with either Fatty or Sooty. Till then, Squirt will just keep demanding my attention!
The locust plague has arrived at our house these last few days. I've been out running around, clapping my hands and waving my arms like a mad woman to make them fly on. It's all been in vain as a new lot arrives straight away. They normally don't like water, so I've been putting the sprinklers on to try and get rid of them. Once they're on the wing, it's a waste of time spraying them with insecticide.
I'm just pannicking that they'll eat all my new lawn! We had them a few years ago and they hung around our patch of lawn for weeks and ate it almost bare. We had them again in March this year and they stripped the leaves from the lillypilly hedge, and even ate the agapanthus!
The photo's aren't very good but you can get the idea from the black/brown things all over the lawn!
Monday, November 24, 2008
This is Elphie with her new owner Cathy who is Emma's singing teacher. Elphie is short for Elphaba who is a character from the musical "Wicked". I'm very sure that little Elphie is going to be spoilt rotten by Cathy and Jon. They had already bought her a new bed and some toys and couldn't wait for her to arrive. It was a bit sad saying goodbye to her, but we'll get weekly updates at singing lessons.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
This is what our harvest looks like at the moment. The header is stripping barley and then emptying it's box into the semi to be taken to the delivery site. We had rain on Friday night which has stopped the harvest. It's been a foul, windy, grey weekend so far and so cold that I've put the heater on! Hopefully, we'll be back harvesting early next week.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
The kittens are growing quite quickly now and they're eating soft cat food and kitten biscuits. I still give them three bottle feeds a day, but they're not drinking as much milk as before.
As you can see from the photo's, they are thoroughly spoiled by Ryan and Emma.
They're very playful now too and I could sit and watch their antics all day! They love to get in amongst the timber venetian blinds on the windows.
Christmas is fast approaching now and I've been trying to get some gifts made over the last few days. I can't show you any of them because the recipients read my blog! I'll do a post about them after Christmas, if I remember!
This is a doll by Emily Martin of the Inside a Black Apple blog. She has it as a free pattern on her blog. I made it for a good friend's daughter, Jaycee who was 3 yesterday. It's really quick and easy to make and I'd recommend them for any little girls you know.
Finally we have some greenery around our house!! The first 150m of turf went down on Wednesday last week, and then another 270m on Friday. It looks fabulous and makes the house seem cooler!
I have to wait until after harvest for Farmer Phil to start building the timber deck, and then the yard will really start to look good.
The tree is a Blueberry Ash which is a small, native Australian tree which has really pretty pink "ballerina skirt" flowers. Mum gave me two for my birthday back in January and I didn't want to plant them until the watering system was installed. There'd be too much pressure on me to keep them alive with manual watering!
I wanted to plant the other one on the eastern end of the house but when I started digging the hole, I hit rock about 10cm down. I moved to another spot, but hit rock again so I don't know where I'll plant the second one. The whole eastern end of the house is sitting on a shelf of granite rock!
Monday, November 10, 2008
Here's a photo of the kittens eating their first meal of kitten food - Whiska's chicken tender loaf! As you can see they absolutely adored it. It makes them poo a lot more though!!
We had a very constructive weekend working in the garden. We have been waiting for a bobcat to come and dig 70m of trench so that we could install the last of the watering system. He promised he'd be here last week, and said Saturday at the latest. Well, he never showed! So we dug the trench by hand. Farmer Phil did most of the digging, but Ryan and I tried to help as much as we could. Emma was at a friend's house for the weekend, so she missed out on the fun!
It's all ready now to have the turf laid. I'm still waiting on the first lot of turf to be cut by the turf farm - the farmer said that with the drought, it's just not ready to be cut. I'll post some photo's of laying the grass when it arrives. We can't wait to have nice green grass around the house.
Farmer Phil will start harvesting again today after we had 14mm of rain on Friday afternoon. He's still stripping canola, and he's quite happy with it's yield at the moment. It looks like I'll be laying the turf on my own!
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Here are the kittens after 10 days of hand feeding them. Sadly, the smallest dark tabby one died last Thursday - it was a very sad day for me and I cried when I buried him amongst the lillypilly hedge. I think he contracted pneumonia as he was struggling to breathe properly and refused to drink.
All the others are fighting fit and running around the house like they own the place! It was very difficult to get any decent photo's of them as they don't sit still long enough!
Emma's singing teacher is taking the smokey grey one, but all the others are still looking for homes.
We're all ready to start our harvest now. The header has been serviced, the canola has been windrowed and Farmer Phil is eager to see how well the crops will yield.
Farmer Phil harvested a small canola sample yesterday and had it tested for moisture and oil content. The moisture level was a bit too high to start harvesting it today, so he'll have to cool his heels for a day or so. The oil content was only 32% which is well below the receival standard of 42%. This is due to the dry conditions and lack of crucial rainfall during the growing season. We will be penalised price-wise for this drop in oil content.
As you can see, the canola looks very different now compared to a few months ago when it had lush, green foliage and pretty yellow flowers. All it is now is a hard, thick stalk with some crunchy pods on the ends.