Friday, 31 March 2017


First up, thanks for your comments and emails.. I have been feeling like I've been talking to myself and really tossing up if to keep going with the blog.
Let me know what you think.. and give me some feedback of what topics you would like to read about on the blog.

 The new ram Trump... He's doing what he does best (nothing useful) - Here he is sitting down on the job....  The question is will we have lambs this spring?

 I've left yesterday's post up in the air re what happened to one of the ewes. We are unsure what happened but at a guess she got her foot caught in a rabbit hole and tripped and fell down the bank.
She was found in the morning in a puddle, wet, cold miserable and in real bad shape. We have hunting friends who can do the deed quickly when required, Its done humanely with compassion and respect. Still, after having sheep for over 17 years now it never gets easier...

We have had a plague of rabbits and Brent has been busy filling in the holes...and filling the freezer for me with rabbit.... Rabbits are mighty cute due to Beatrix Potter... However in real farm life they are pests, wreck the land and are destructive to livestock and my garden.

Kate asked where do we get sock yarn from:

Stray Cat Sock is Abbey's favourite sock yarn in New Zealand. Hay if you buy any tell her Abbey sent you!

Farm Stay Guests....

 Beau and Sienna....

Remember these super cute mice?

They will be at the Knack Market tomorrow and are $5.00 each. (I've four coming my way, one for each of my cats)

The Grocery Girl Swap.

I've shared before how I enjoy the Podcast of the Grocery Girls who are two sisters that make an enjoyable show. They organised a Spring Swap which I joined.

My parcel arrived yesterday from Ohio USA. My what a treat, And might I add a bit of happiness into the day. One of our ewes had got injured and needed to be put down. Never a nice day but with having animals comes joys and sadness.
So to have the postie and then man to put the ewe down at the same time was very helpful in distracting my mind of the deed that had to happen....

What a wonderful parcel - Smooth Operator Sock pattern (I've tried once to knit socks and felt like throwing them across the room - I can't for the life of me work with 4 sticks at once.... but I'm gonna have another go and I have Abbey to help me).
Such perfect yarn for a Grocery Girl swap with Hue Loco Tightly Knit - Big Sister set. The big sister is Traci (blond) of the girls.
Some fun knitting notions and if that was not spoiling me enough, my swap buddy asked if there was anything I cannot get in New Zealand that I would like and I mentioned how I have wondered what the Taproot magazine was like. Can you believe it - she organised for a copy to be sent to me and it is currently in the mail. I'd love to know what you all think of Taproot.

This is my parcel to my swap buddy - everything 100% New Zealand. She wanted woolly smelling yarn. Anna Gratton wool was perfect.  I also tucked in a ball of Stay Cat Socks, Some Tui lip balm, Some lamb treats for her dogs - Ziwipeak and  kiwi pineapple lumps with instructions to pop in the freezer before eating (the best way to eat them don't you agree). Plus a card from Drawingafineline - Annabelle Rodger. I had super fun choosing for my swap buddy, Plus her parcel arrived from me on the same day as I got hers- what fun!

The Grocery Girls will be having another swap so keep an eye out on their Ravelry Page. Highly recommend and you too might make a new knitting friend out of it,

Farm Stay Guests...

Beau and Sienna are a joy to look after, I get such a lovely welcome from them. It's quite hard to get photos as they really just want to have a sit on my lap rather than get photographed.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017


Annabel Langbein's new cookbook Essential is out. Brent said "go shout yourself a copy". As Annabel is travelling New Zealand signing her book I popped up and brought a copy and got mine signed. She is as lovely in person as in the media. She shared she is now cooking for family members with different dietary needs and "gets" what it is like. She has made the book very gluten free, dairy free, vegan and vegetarian friendly with fab index.

It is hard pleasing everyone and on top of that doing all the different diets....It drives me nuts at times. And is actually quite stressful.

BUT we have seen a big difference in health.  So it is worth it,

I keep sane by having a coffee and treat when I go out with friends. But slowly accepting that might have to stop for me. (not till after Friday and Sunday!). Why is it us mums always look after ourselves last and put others before us?

We really are living in an experimental time re food with GMO's, packaged foods from supermarkets, antibiotics fed to our animal that we eat. Then there is the poor soil from over agricultural farming. Oh and do not get me started on supplements. CRAZY most are synthetic...(a post for another day on these).

Oh if you are interested in such topics sign up for the Koanga Institutes free web class at 2pm tomorrow. Kay Baxter is sharing. I'm all signed in and looking forward to it.

Click here for more information,,,,

Farm Stay Guests....

Beau and Sienna are here for three weeks. They have the full cattery to own. Love it how Sienna does the old head bunting that many of my line do.

If you have a friend that is looking for a nice place for their cat to stay do share about us - I currently have room.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Movies, Royalty and Cats

We thoroughly enjoyed the movie A Street Cat Named Bob. It was better than the book in my opinion. Do look out for the cameo appearance at the end of the author James Bowen. Loved the story of Kate meeting Bob - here is the link.

Farm Stay Guests

I am pleased Sheba and Cleo were not put into a communal cattery (I personally  would never put my cat in one). They have found their first time away from home (in nearly 10 years) to be a bit strange. They have enjoyed our visits down to see them and enjoy being petted and snuggle in. I feel they are just settling in well and now it is time for them to go home today.

Thursday, 23 March 2017

Books, Knitting, Cats, Sheep....

 Grown & Gathered is a blog and Instagram account I have enjoyed following along. So I was thrilled to read their book.
Is it a lifestyle I would want? Well, maybe when I was younger (If you ask our kids, they have often said they are grateful for their dad.... Who grounds me. They felt if it was not for him we would be living in a bus or commune...)
As for Matt and Lentil... I do not know if I could put so much work into land I do not own and then move on... but they are young.
Totally well worth reading the book and following their journey!

I'm up to the rib shawl collar of my Georgetown Cardi. I actually like rib knitting - With the slow methodical process I tend to get into quite a meditative state.
During my naturopath studies it is often recommended to meditate. But personally, meditation is not for me. I feel terribly guilty sitting when there is ALWAYS something to do. So meditation for me is knitting - I slow down, slow my breath and knit being in the moment without feeling guilty...  I am actually doing something. Weeding also gets me into the meditative zone.

I don't believe there is only one way to do anything.

Farm Stay guests....

Cleo - ebony Mandalay

Sheba - Seal Burmese

I feel extremely privileged to be looking after Sheba and Cleo. They will be 10 years old this year and are cats we have bred here (Laura/Lordy, Cinders/Lordy).
They have never ever been in a cattery. When their family go away friends have looked after them at their own home. So this is quite a BIG thing for these cats (and owners) - (I get that since I have only ever put one cat and one dog in boarding in my whole life)
I always leave the cats to settle in after a big car ride and then let them come out of their carry cage on their own terms when they are ready. I let them smell their new digs and then I go down later to let them meet me.... It works.
They are now settled, not quite moved on from their owners - but I know they are happy and we have had some lovely pats already.

Their view...  By the way thank you for all the ram names sent in... I did leave a comment that James has actually named this ram - Trump due to his orange tinted legs. We are not sure if it is his colouring or if it is pizzle stain. Anyway.... Trump is not up to the job and we will be moving him on.....

Saturday, 18 March 2017

The New Bloke.... Name the Ram Competition.

The new "Bloke" arrived today. He did come with a name, however, it's an inappropriate name for a family blog. 
Plus.... There is no way you would get me calling  his real name out loud.... What would the neighbours think was going on.

For a bit of fun lets have a competition to name the new ram. The winner will be one of the suggested names that is chosen by our family and a prize will be posted to the winner.
Feel free to leave your name suggestions as a comment on the blog or if easier on Facebook or Instagram. 

 I wish I had captured him leaving the trailer on video... He ran to our ewes

I really mean galloped towards the ewes..... Brent said "He'll be alright - Looks like he knows what he's doing"

 The girls are pretty taken to him too.....

Farm Stay Guests...

Man Cat Facial Massage

Leonardo with Abbey

 Pinot with Brent

Hope their families are both having a wonderful holiday and that they are pleased to see their boys are not homesick.

Friday, 17 March 2017

Brothers from other Mothers

 Louie is our first ever entire dog that we have had neutered, It became apparent that he was born with an enormous amount of testosterone which let him down severely with social skills. He relentlessly would nose every dogs bottom and not get the hint that it was not behaviour other dogs wanted. At dog obedience training he would hump the instructors .... like how embarrassing... I refused to look at the reaction from the other dog parents... Like can you imagine how mortifying!

So the deed was done. He barked the vet clinic down (Louie is a barker... again we have never owned a dog that barks like Louie before). Some firm training has been happening re his barking but as I was not at the vet clinic I assume he thought it was wonderful and let his vocals fly. I think it did make him jump the que and his operation was done early. When he woke up he howled.... the vet clinic rang me at 2pm asking when could I pick Louie up (it was meant to be 4.30pm LOL).

So now we wait and see if this op makes any changes in his behaviours....

As for the cone - he is not phased at all by it.  He just walks into everything as if he is driving a bulldozer including the back of your knees.... drinks with it, squeaks his ball. Basically carries on as normal.

Farm Stay Guests...

 I always sigh when I come in at night to look at the photos I've taken. Leonardo is actually happy, but listening to the sounds and getting quite sick of having to sit on the ledge for  a photo when he knows the mince is on the other side and he just wants his dinner...

Leonardo is from Laura and Lordy.

 Pinot in fine form.... the tail says it all.

Pinot is from Jasmine and Lordy (Laura is Jasmine's mum - so Laura is Pinot's grandma)

Lordy is Leonardo and Pinot's dad.

It really is wonderful having the cats we bred back to stay. And yes I did THINK of breeding Louie but as dobermans are a breed that can attract interesting characters I really couldn't be bothered vetting owners....BUT I am lining up a new ram... so will have lambs for spring.

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Flowers and cats... BLISS.

Floret Farm's Cut Flower Garden from Spencer MacDonald on Vimeo.

Floret's Farm Cut Flower website is here.
But do zip to Amazon so you can have a peek inside the book. 

I am enjoying their Instagram Feed

I'm a sucker for books... I've put this one on my wish list... waiting for Books Depository to stock it so I get free postage to New Zealand.

Farm Stay Guests....

Pinot enjoying the sun that came out this afternoon,

Monday, 13 March 2017

Any Day Now

 the nerines will be in flower.

Farm Stay Guests...
I was whistling and calling Pinot's name trying to get him to look at the camera, when all he wanted to do was eat his tucker.