I had intended doing a post last week about the garden progress, but to be truthful, I didn't make the extra time. In fact, over the past twelve months I have been less able to blog because this life is full, and as the days or weeks pass I'm not sure what to share with you for time seems to overflow with happenings in and around home or within the family and wondering which bit to capture and share eludes me. There's always something to plant, tend, bake, sew, read...and there's often a loved one or a good friend to spend time with. You know...these are the important things, the ordinary things, which make up the foundation of a simple life well-lived.
It's usual to write a "catch up" post after an absence, but I think today I'd just like to tell you, and show you, the things which have brought me joy lately...like the birds who visit every day, the birds who have very little fear of me and if I just walk slowly by them, they stay right where they are, doing what they're doing. I have been especially cheered to have a new visitor each day, this handsome Kookaburra - and if you know anything about me, you know they are my favourite bird and feature on our front door and in a painting near our entranceway...
Then there are the regulars, like Cockatoos, who mostly visit in the morning...
...and the family of Myna birds who have made their home (and had their babies) just under our carport roof. They strut around the yard all day long, walking beside me as I tend to the garden, and know when I say "get off" that I am telling them to either get off the new raised bed or off the ceiling fans in our undercover area (they LOVE the ceiling fans!), and they promptly obey. Blossom laughs when she hears me talking to them as I don't have to raise my voice, just use a stern tone. ;-)
And of course, the rainbow lorikeets, who gather with all their clan around 4pm every single afternoon. There can be ten or twenty birds at the feeder all at once, and more on the clothesline or in one of our trees waiting their turn. And my oh my, the noise! Yet, it all brings me joy.
There's also a pair of Catbirds (a variety of bowerbird), Sparrows, Honeyeaters, and a few Ibis which visit through the day. No matter what time I go outdoors, there will be feathered friends to chat with, and they always cause me to thank God for His gracious gift of birdlife in our quarter acre.
I am still enjoying a couple of hours sewing each afternoon; sometimes a bit of mending (I have a pile of hems to take up later today), sometimes some machine piecing for the quilts I am working on, sometimes preparing applique for the next block of a quilt, and sometimes quiet hand sewing as I listen to an audio book or watch an old episode of Marple or Poirot.
When each block is completed I hang it over a rail in the sewing room. The blocks hanging at the moment are for two different quilts.
Well, there's so much growing in the garden now that I need to draw myself a map/layout of all four sections across the quarter acre so I can remember it all! It's still only late autumn (our best growing season in the tropics is winter) and nearly everything is still at the seedling or just sprouting stage, but there's so much promise in this and I get incredibly excited when my seedlings begin to take off, or a tray of seeds have sprouted. The flowers are bright joys sprinkled among everything, too.
Here's just a little of what is planted so far. In the front yard - my 50-year old ironing board died recently, but we're so sentimentally attached to it that it's been repurposed as a growing frame for a pot of winged beans. Either side of this are raised beds which have snow peas, cucamelons, beetroot, capsicum, rockmelon, and a variety of flowers for the good bugs to visit and the bees to enjoy. I'm also very attached to our ancient Garden Gnome which has travelled all across Australia with us when we moved here and there whilst the kids were growing up (homeschooling all the way).