Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Living the LIFE!

I've been pretty quiet on the blog since we moved towns, but I've been so busy being happy!  We bought 1.6 acres and it is just enough for us to grow our own fruit and vegetables, keep animals and create a generally awesome space to be home schooled in!  I'll just upload some photos for you to update you on the footprint farm happenings...

This is a 1940's truck my husband bought!  I was not impressed at first as he didn't consult me, but it will be dead useful for picking up larger items/moving animals around town, and look at that elevated playspace for Butterfly! 

I LOVE CHICKENSSS!!!  I. Love. Chickens!  They are awesome for eating scraps, fertilising the yard and are bloody entertaining!  This is our Silkie girl, Sookie, with her first baby, Bickie.  Bickie only lived for a day but we will never forget him.

This is Bindi (yep, my daughter has a Bindi Irwin obsession!) She is a poodle x bichon and she and her brother Chase will be coming to live with us in a few weeks!  Butterfly lives and breathes dogs so we are very excited to be able to finally give her some

This is our vege garden!  One day it will be full of vege beds, and I plan to grow the climbing plants all around the edges :)  I'm open to advice, I'm wondering whether or not to plant a hedge along the left side, to protect against wind and the first morning sun for frost damage.  Good idea or bad idea?  I don't want too much shade in there but I found some of my plants did better when we had corn shading them... Also, if I did plant a hedge it would be awesome if it was productive... does anyone know of a hedging plant that also produces something edible or useful?  I've heard tea plants can be used as a hedge... but I'd have to start drinking tea...

Our very first broccoli is growing!  Our family eats broccoli almost every night so this is a big deal for me.  It is so interesting to see how vegetables grow, I didn't realise how big broccoli and cauliflower plants grow!  We have planted purple carrots and purple cauliflowers for fun

Our first carrot!  Butterfly loves pulling carrots out, its very exciting! Having a vege patch has been really good for Butterfly to learn about nutrition, she loves being able to eat things straight out of the garden... yesterday she was in there eating lettuce!  Very unlike her but very welcome! 

This... This is the compost.  Exciting huh?  To me it is!  I added to it for about 8 months and not much broke down, then when I started getting lazy and throwing everything to the chooks and forgetting about the compost... I opened it up and it was surprisingly decomposed!  Lesson learnt... you have to give it a rest if its going to decompose! 

This is Butterfly's craft stash... she is not the kind of child who will tip all this out!  (OK she might have done it a few times, but generally she doesn't) She is very creative and loves craft!

This is our dam, which is now full due to recent rains!  And these are our ducks.  RIP Floyd, our drake and first fox casualty...

This is my mini orchard!  So far I have oranges, cumquats, lemonade, peach, ice cream bean tree, mulberry (white), lemon, dwarf mandarin, 2 x dwarf apples and a dwarf lime tree!  I still have a bunch of dwarf trees I hope to get... macadamia nuts, avocados, plums, nectarines, cherries, almonds, pecans, pears and a black mulberry!  I'm sure there's more I've forgotten!  I have started with the dwarf varieties to avoid getting TOO much fruit, and also so I have room to plant more of a variety :)
PS that white seat is a 100 year old seat from a Tasmanian horse tram.  I'm a little bit in love with it!

Pea plants! Butterfly eats the peas as they grow, raw and straight from the pod!  So far none have made it to the kitchen but whatevs, I'll plant more next year!

This is Butterfly's secret garden!  One day the trees will have grown into a living wall around the edges :) Since this photo was taken we have added a sandpit boat that her Grandma and Pa found second hand and restored for her :)

We really love living here!  Yes, we had to move 3 hours away from our families to be able to afford this lifestyle.  But I haven't regretted it for a second!  When I visit the Gold Coast I miss the sky.  Out here, you get SO MUCH SKY!  As far as the eye can see.  It is beautiful and relaxing. 

I love that we get birds in our yards I'd only ever seen in pet shops or zoos before!  I love the flocks of galahs and cockatoos that come around.  I love the cranes and spoonbills that visit our dam.  I love hay bales.  I love shovelling dirt... or manure!  I love how excited Butterfly gets when she sees a new red strawberry or a new flower!

There are downsides... like the WIND!  Farking hell the wind!  We back onto farmland and sometimes the wind is extreme!  And there is usually some form of wind.  Its pretty good in summer though ;) but not so good when you are trying to hang stuff on the line! 

Also the fencing isn't 6 foot high like in the city.  People can see into your yard.  My neighbours have just had to get used to me running around in PJs and my dressing gown... yes sometimes still at 3pm!  They should just count themselves lucky I don't do nudy runs to the clothesline.

I'll put mice in the downside... they have ruined a mattress we had in the spare room.  But I won't lie... they are cute and I do love seeing them in the compost or the chook pen!

Uber lameness = me seeing my neighbour spraying chemicals all over his yard >:( Tis too close for comfort to my organic paradise. 

I have people telling me all the time how lucky I am.  I guess we are fortunate.  However all of this didn't just fall in our lap.  We had to go out and grab this opportunity.  We had to make sacrifices, we had to take a chance.  And it has well and truly paid off!  My advice to anyone wanting to get out of the city is to just look around.  Even if you think its not possible for your family, you might be surprised!  It truly is a wonderful way to raise kids!