Category Archives: Ramblings

Money in Mud

There’s apparently an old farm saying that says ‘There’s money in mud’, which makes sense because without it the ground would be too dry to sow any crops. In February things here were pretty dire, no decent rainfall in a very long time, feeding sheep, dams going dry and we were starting to clean them out. Then in a turn around of weather over the last couple of months we have had enough rain to sow our crop. We have so far planted Lupins, Canola, Faba Beans, and just this last week begun to sow our wheat.

We are definitely by no means out of the woods yet, but at least we have hope, enough to keep us going and smiling. The Lupins are even up and out of the ground, The kids love to go up the paddock and check where all the crops are up to. Which ones are going great guns, which ones might need to be resown or which ones already need spraying for weeds.

I absolutely love the fact that my kids are so interested and involved in the farm, they ride along in tractors and farm vehicles, help out in the shearing shed and the sheep yards. It warms my heart to know they are growing up out here and learning so much about our farming life while they do it.

DSC_0802 (857x1280)


DSC_0817 (857x1280)


DSC_0799 (857x1280)

That moment that will stick in your mind

A few weeks ago I was travelling back from Orange with a work colleague, she was driving and I was happily chatting away, admiring the scenery, looking at the paddocks, the hills, the fencelines when I registered that there was a bent fence post. I had that momentary thought of ‘why is that fencepost bent, it shouldn’t be‘, then I registered the rest of the image, there was a car against it, that’s why it’s bent, then I processed that there was a lady in the driver’s seat and she did not look conscious. There were no other people or cars pulled up, so I told my work colleague ‘I think we need to stop‘, we pulled over, turned around and went back. At the same time, so did the two cars on the highway in front of us.

It was all very surreal, I called the ambulance and the lady on the phone talked us through the whole process of checking for breathing, she wasn’t, we had to get her out of the car and start compressions. I did not find it at all helpful when the operator told us we would do 400 compressions before the ambulance arrived, so I chose not to tell my work colleague that bit. The blokes that had pulled up were not overly helpful, and we just tried to block them out and focus on counting and listening for breathing, while continuing compressions. To cut a long story short it felt like an eternity before the ambulance arrived, when in reality it probably wasn’t, the police and ambulance officers took over, it did not look promising, they were still doing compressions as they loaded her in the ambulance.

We know that this lady was airlifted to a hospital, but beyond that we have not heard any more. I do not know her name or if she survived, I hope she did, and I am taking no news as good news.

Today I drove back past the scene of her accident, I was alone and I felt sad and sick. I thought that I would be OK, but I wasn’t quite, I realised that, that moment, when I was admiring fenceposts rather than looking straight ahead has changed things, that moment and that place will stick with me for a very long time.

I am not writing this for a ‘good job you’ or any such thing, I am writing to say that if you see something that doesn’t seem quite right, don’t just keep driving or walking, stop and investigate because you could just make a difference as to whether a person is alone and not given a chance or whether they get a shot at fighting for life.

It is also a good thing to keep your first aid certificate up to date, I know mine isn’t and it’s now on my to do list to get it updated, you just never know when you might need it.

Crossing Off Our List

The last few weeks have been typically busy, I have come to realise that it’s just the way it’s going to be, there is always going to be something happening, a new challenge to keep us on our toes. Last week it was Muddy Hubby and the Chicken Pox, this week who knows.

To help make holidays a little less frantic and more about the kids I sat down with them all on Saturday morning and we made some lists of what they’d like to do these school holidays. The answers I got when I asked them what they’d like to do I found surprising. They were simple things, but things to do together as a family.

There were no major holiday activities like theme parks or  zoos or movies. They included – Make Pizzas, Plant seeds, Water the Garden, Bake, Go Lamb Tailing, Ride our Bikes and Help tidy the house. It was a little bit of a wake up call to me that these kind of things have been let slide in my busyness and that these are what my kids value and enjoy and I need to make more time for.

The downside to writing a list is, that like me, they want to pack as much as they can into one day so they can cross them off their list. So….we’re all trying to slow down a little, pace ourselves over the holidays and savour the activities and time together rather than rushing. A nice reminder for me, to just hang out with my Muddy Kids.

A lot happens in the space of a few weeks

So much happens when you don’t blog for 3 weeks, big events, little events, lots of lovely family time. We’ve checked crops, been to parties, celebrated a special 2nd Birthday, explored the Warrumbungles and the observatory and enjoyed just being together as a family.  We’ve said goodbye to an old worker and welcomed a new one into our world. We had an awesome Father’s Day and spent it with friends at the local pub.
We have gone from jumpers and long pants to shorts and T-shirts, with thongs and sandles, it is such a fantastic time of year, not too hot, the flowers are starting to bloom, the roses and grapevines are greening up and it’s so much fun to just be outside, in the sunshine, in the garden and soaking it all up before it gets too hot! No matter what the rollercoaster of life has kept up it’s momentum!


I am into rambling this week, rambling thoughts, rambling words, just seemingly rambling through my weekly routine. The Muddy Kids and I have been pottering around the farm, all rugged up in the mornings and stripping down to T-Shirts in the middle of the day. The washing pile grows exponentially at this time of year as the kids get the bottoms of their pants wet playing outside in the mornings on the wet grass and letting the chooks out. Then out of habit when they strip off their jumpers and long sleeve tops they put them straight in the washing basket rather than wearing them again the next day.
Then in the evening the chill comes in and we go through the afternoon routine of homework and bath before rugging up for bed. It’s a rambling farm life here this week. What’s your week like?

Sounds of Laughter

I have had the rare delight of 5 straight days at home with my Muddy Kids, just getting jobs done, and spending time together. It has been so lovely. I am still running round like a mad person trying to get through my to do lists, but every so often I stop and just enjoy being at home, soaking it up before I go back to work.
The best bit about it – the sounds of laughter as we play, that wicked giggle when they are being cheeky and know it, the hysterical, uncontrollable laughter as they have so much fun with each other. There is nothing in the world like that sound of laughter.

Shiny and New

Over the weekend Muddy Hubby and I had to be on the coast, so we had two Muddy Kids with us and took some time out to take them to the beach. For me, growing up on the coast it’s not so much of a ‘wow’ thing, for Muddy Hubby and the kids though it is awesome, every, single, time! It’s like each time is the first time seeing it, stopping, just watching the sun, the sand, the waves, and the shells, my goodness the shells! It is all shiny and new.

Each time we go to the beach the Muddy Kids collect shells, hundreds of them, we go through a culling process, then a washing process, and then a mummy culling process and then we have a small collection to take back home to remember our time at the beach.

Although the beach doesn’t have the same ‘wow’ factor for me, I get such enjoyment from Muddy Hubby’s and the Muddy Kids excitement that I can’t help but get caught up in the excitement, looking at the beach through fresh eyes as if it was shiny and new.

Locking the Gate

A few weeks ago Muddy Hubby and I went to an information session organised by local members of our community who are concerned about the fact that Coal Seam Gas Mining is coming to our shire. I knew a little bit about it, I’d seen a story on ABC’s Four Corners and done some reading of emails coming through. The night was informative, it was worrying, it was thought provoking. The evening did not try to brainwash us, in fact the organisers encouraged attendees to go away and do their own reading to further gain an understanding of Coal Seam Gas Mining and the impact it can have on our water, our land, our health and our future and make their own decisions about whether it’s something we want to allow into our community and onto our land.

The more I read, the more concerned I get. We now have a No Coal Seam Gas group formed in the shire and people are coming together as a community to say to No Coal Seam Gas Mining. Muddy Hubby and I have decided that for us we would like to Lock Our Gate to Coal Seam Gas Mining, however there is nothing to stop the Gas Companies approaching our neighbours and if they say yes, you can come and put down a well on our place, the gas companies then have capacity to firstly drill down and then across to under our land. This is why it’s so important that our community unites on this, so that as a whole we can Lock Our Gate and keep the water and land safe for future generations.

One of the worrying things is that science has not yet caught up to the mining companies, we don’t largely know what the long term effects are. The CSIRO has information on their website about the basics, but the long-term impact has not yet been able to be studied, yet despite this the government allows the Gas Companies to continue, even with indications being that the long-term impacts are negative. One of the best sources of information is the ABC, here, they even have a map that shows you where there are coal seam gas mines, exploration licences and pilot wells for possible future sites, it was a definite eye-opener for me.

I am however only one person, with my opinion, but if you’re like me and there is the possibility of them coming onto your land or into your area, make sure you do some reading and be informed.

The Sharing Thing

We are on struggle street lately when it comes to sharing. Especially the Muddy Puzzler and the Muddy Baby Boy, they flat out do not like to share. It could be a drink cup, a bunch of grapes, a shovel in the garden, an elastic, anything, if one has it the other wants it, and they will do anything to either hold onto it or try and get it off the other.  No amount of negotiations will help, no amount of bribery or coercion, it’s just flat out no sharing.
It has worn pretty thin, the tantrums, the tears, the fights, that is one thing they are both happy to do together, cry. I can tolerate the odd tantrum but when the two of them are home together it goes for most of the day. We are managing at the moment by being outside as much as possible and sending them to opposite corners of the garden, but as Jack Frost has also started visiting the time outside is getting shorter so I am in search of new strategies to stop the carry-on.
Baking works as long as they both have identical utensils, books work provided they are both allowed to sit on a knee, and that is where I have run out of ideas…….If you have any tips to help them learn to share or keep them separated I am willing to give them a go!

When Friends Come to Stay

This June long weekend has been the first one that we have been home for in a few years, normally we have been heading to Sydney. This year however was different, we had friends come and stay with us, with their precious 2 year old twins, they packed up their car and headed west to us. It was pure bliss, they were such easy house guests and the Muddy Kids just loved showing the twins all of their toys and all around the farm. We took them up the paddock and checked the sheep, we got them on the bikes and the tractors and even the back of the ute.

We shared good food, good drinks and good stories. This friend and I used to live together many years ago and it was just like slipping into old times, being in the kitchen together, just chatting and reminiscing, but with the added element of husbands and children, it was delightful. Simply delightful.

I am so grateful this week for when old friends visit with their new families, it is so special to be sharing our families and hopefully our kids will be firm friends like we are for a long time to come.

Linking up at Village Voices for 52 Weeks of Grateful.