Hello May. I missed You.

An overnight temperature just slightly south of zero wouldn’t be particularly noteworthy if this was June. It would be almost commonplace if this was July.

But as it’s only the second day of May, last night’s overnight low of minus 1 felt more than a bit nippy.

Especially as we were wearing short sleeves only a week ago, so we haven’t really had a chance to slowly acclimatise. Not that we ever do. Castlemaine is nothing if not extreme in its weather changes … which is one of the reasons why Castlemaine folks perfected the art of ‘layer dressing’ long before the rest of the world caught on.

Today I started out in socks, leggings, trousers, a long sleeved top, a dress over all that, a jacket and a knitted hat. Thus far the hat, jacket and trousers have come off. When it gets REALLY cold, the kit will include a cowl or scarf, wristwarmers / fingerless gloves and legwarmers. Maybe a jumper/sweater.

For now though, it has turned into an absolutely stunning, clear autumn day.



Perfect for outside work like raking and piling and bonfiring.

It will – no doubt – be equally cold tonight with no cloud cover to trap the heat, but for now, it’s a lovely day to be a goat



Spinning at the Goat Show

Perhaps I should have titled this multi-tasking at the Goat Show.

It was the last weekend in April, so for the third year running, Renata, David Abigail and I could be found at the Prince Of Wales Showgrounds in Bendigo, surrounded by boer goats, woodturners, saanen goats, chrysanthemums, cashmere goats, giant pumpkins [309 kilograms!! ] angora goats, fabulous food, mini goats, local food producers, nubian goats  … and alpacas.

We were basically there to pad out the ‘exhibits’, do a favour for our favourite goat gurus Pete-and-Brenda, and to add a bit of Ye Olde Worlde local colour.


I took one of the upright [castle] spinning wheels and spun appropriately goat-y cashmere/mohair, Nadie was demonstrating supported spinning using a spindle turned by a local Bendy bloke by the name of Jeff, who, we are reliably informed, was there amongst the woodturners, [ shame we couldn’t remember the name of Tara’s supplier  of wonderful turned thingies ]

050 David who isn’t really an ‘animal’ person, was fairly resigned to a boring weekend, and Abby cornered the market on being cute and adorable [ although these ladies came a close second ]


As you can see from the video, Nadie has fully mastered the art of Mummy multi-tasking, although she feels this wasn’t her BEST spinning, given that she couldn’t see what the heck she was doing over Abby.

Call me biased if you like, but I think she’s pretty damn impressive.


A perfect Sunday … and Quinoa Fritters

After a very strange week weatherwise [ T-shirts one day, winter woollies and a wood fire the next …

close to zero overnight and large swathes of the eastern side of the country actually had SNOW ]

today turned into one of those beautiful, balmy Spring days that make one glad that daylight Saving has started.

Off with the flannel jammies, and the cardi only lasted till mid morning.

David and I had breakfast on the verandah with assorted small animals

and later we rambled around the block [ keeping a watchful eye out for brown-and-wrigglies ]

and indulged in a spot of block clearance-by-goat


About mid afternoon, and despite a healthy breakfast and lunch, I found myself with a major case of the munchies, and casting hungry glances at all the luscious recipes on Pinterest.

Funny how many of them seemed to feature large amounts of chocolate [ hello migraine ], pumpkin, and peanut butter.

anyway, I decided to be good, and we had these cheesy zucchini quinoa patties/pikelets/fritters instead.

Of course my version was a little different to the original because , after all, it IS Sunday afternoon and there are no 24 hour supermarkets in the middle of the bush.

So here’s the original

and these are my modifications.

I have no idea what Fontina cheese is like. My choices were sliced Bega Strong & Bitey vintage tasty, Danish feta and  Perfecto Italiano’s Perfect Pizza [ grated Parmesan, Mozzarella and Cheddar ] I went with the grated pizza mix.

I used fresh garlic chives from the garden in place of the spring onions

and I added about a half a grated zucchini just because.

I’m not big on fried food so I used just the tiniest spray of Canola oil and a non stick pan.

Australian measures are not the same as US ones, but I basically went ahead with cups and spoons as stated and just added a wee bit more flour. I figure these sort of recipes are more of a guideline anyway. My eggs may be a different size. Did I pack down the grated cheese as firmly?  It’s all an experiment, right ?

Oh, and for the record, they were delicious. Served with sweet chilli sauce and a dab of Lite Sour Cream. Moist in the middle and crunchy on the outside. Perfection.


Three Sleeps To Go





until the latest surgical rearrangement of my innards.


all the Carer arrangements are in place.

David will have live-in Carers,

the dog is going to stay with his extended family at Emu Creek;

David’s Carer is going to look after the goats,

and the cats will pretty much look after themselves [ so long as appropriate tributes are made in the shape of fresh kibble ]


I’ve spent the last week keeping frantically busy, partly it must be said, so that I don’t have too much time to dwell on things, and also because there’s been a buttload lot of stuff that needed doing.

There has been mass murder of weeds and the re-woodchipping of one of the garden beds

Further wholesale slaughter of a couple of acres of serrated tussock [ shoulder high very invasive grass ] It is generally not a good idea to stomp around in high grass once the warmer weather hits and certain reptiles of the brown-and-slithery variety wake up.

Some of this was accomplished by caprine means but mostly it was done by hand … and no, I’m not totally insane. I’m perfectly happy to peg the goats out and let them munch their way through enormous amounts of greenery , but there are huge swathes of this block that are home to various species of very tiny and very beautiful [ and apparently very tasty ] native lillies and orchids, so I choose to decimate those areas myself.

The bonus is that I get  to bonfire whatever I don’t lug up to the goats.

The inner pyro has been very happy this week.

In addition, I made it to quilting on Friday, dance class on Monday, knitting at Daylesford today, AND still managed to fit in a visit to Emu Creek.

There may also have been a weekend visit from Nadie, Chris, and friend Natalie.

This MAY have involved a lot of fun, laughter, sewing, and knitting, on the part of myself and the girls, and some furniture haulage [  some down to Melbourne, and some on the return leg up here ] by The Boy. I know who got the better part of that deal.

Anyway I may leave the photos of the weekend’s creativity for another day, and leave you with some scenes from Emu Creek.

kids in the kitchen

This is Ms Shi, who was a little put out that Brenda and I were inside snuzzling very new baby goats

I can see you in there you know!

Catsmum with ‘hospital hair’ and a cute kid




Baby goat cuteness is not to be ignored


A certain little madam then proceeded to decimate Brenda’s atrium to teach us a lesson. Please note Bear studiously looking the other way so he won’t be blamed for not stopping her.





A Berry Nice day

Red sky at morning, shepherd’s warning … which probably means a flipping cold night tonight …

but it was a lovely way to start in the day, which continued in  pleasant mode:

A lovely squishy package waiting for me at the post office.

This gobbsmackingly gorgeous ‘Mixed Berries” machine washable BFL sock yarn was a prize donated by Marie [ aka selkieb of Meadowlake Arts ] in the recent Ravelry Tour De Fleece. It was a random number generated thing, so not a reflection on the quantity or quality of my spinning, but still … berry noice. My photo doesn’t come close to capturing the saturation level of this yarn

You should all go visit her Etsy Shop

Next, some goat snuzzling over at Pete-and-Brenda-formerly-from-next-door’s farm at Emu Creek, and a chance for Bear to hang out with his family.

Goat snuzzling is always a good thing

Hello. My name is Heidi. I’m an Australian Miniature Goat

Heidi and friend

There may have been a quick run through the Garden Centre on the way home

There might have been one or two modest plant-like purchases

There may have been a spot of weeding in preparation for tomorrow’s planned planting of the hypothetical purchases

and  to finish off ? a relaxing knit in front of the Olympic Swimming coverage … with a cuppa … four cats … one small dog … and a roaring fire