Monday, July 25, 2011

Spirals and mounds

Have you ever seen so splendid a spiral? Ms Tagalong was admiring the growth of the mustard greens in the spiral outside the garden.

Then later in the day Ms Tagalong came across Legs Eleven the designer and planter of this admirable spiral.

“Have you seen the outcome of your hard work,’ Ms Tagalong questioned.

‘No I haven’t, she replied. Smiling her lovely smile and flashing her patterned legs she moved off to talk to others at the local community café. Many people had emerged from the perpetual rain of the last ten days and it was crowded, full of locals and friends of locals to come and enjoy the coffee and camaraderie.

Ms Tagalong just loves the friendship and connections that have been forged and made in the community through the café, the garden and even the community group. She is really hoping that the next working bee in August will see the completion of the pizza oven. She visualises the walls of the stand growing upwards, the clay being spread over the shaped 44 gallon drum. On walking back from the café yesterday Mr Ideasman was delighted to spot two steel plates for the oven doors lurking under a bush in the front of our garden.

It just goes to prove that there is always a use for everything and it just goes to show that you must never throw anything away! Ms Tagalong had to put that in as Mr Ideasman was breathing hard over her shoulder and just wanted her to feel better about the mounds of items still waiting for homes in their new house and garden.
Any ideas for new edifices in the garden? I’m sure we have enough to make most of them!

Just follow the rainbow to find the treasure of our locale. Nothing to do with the garden, I know, but I couldn't resist the break in the rain.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Ms Mova steps up to the plate...again!

Ms Tagalong was walking back to her house on Saturday, she felt like she was stepping back, or even side-stepping her responsibilities. She mused as she stepped whether this would be what it felt like to relinquish the reins, albeit shared.

Battling to get a workable kitchen by the time Mr Ideasman went back to the hallowed halls of academia, Ms Tagalong had taken a short break from painting and had been to view the progress of the working bee.

She needn't have worried. Ms Mova had everything and everybody in control. Tasks had been designated, doors to sheds were being constructed, seeds being collected, fruit trees being weeded, old pumpkins pulled out and beds were being turned and mulched. In fact Ms Tagalong contributed by eating a piece of delicious 2nd birthday cake and drinking a lovely hot cup of tea. Nothing like it to take the fume of paint out of your passages!

After a decent interval both Ms Tagalong and Mr Ideasman ventured back to the garden and found to their delight and perfect timing that lunch was ready. Having no kitchen yet to cook in this was the ideal way to spend our lunch break, eating the most delicious lunch food ever according to Mr Ideasman, we chatted and offered our ideas. Our ideas only, no assistance that day!

What a great turn out, what great progress in the wintry garden and even the rain stayed away and allowed some industrious footings for the new chicken coop, mulch and grass clippings moved and old compost placed onto the newly dug beds. Oh my! Ms Tagalong almost smelt spring in the air and could happily have forgone the painting but unlike Mole and his spring cleaning she and Mr Ideasman trudged back to the renovations.

So far have we come, Ms Mova, from those humble beginnings and all thanks to you, your perserverence and enthusiasm, your commitment and devotion to duty unlike the flighty Ms Tagalong who ditched out of yet another working day.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Short and sweet

Short and sweet, Ms Tagalong was thinking as she strolled along to the garden last night wrapped up and scarfed against the elements. A short and sweet blog this week.

And there they were struggling up the steep camber of the road. Three little chips and a not so old block biking back from an adventure.

'Are the chickens laying?' Ms Tagalong was asked. 'Come and see if they have,' said Ms Tagalong. Three oh so polite little chips and the not so old block from whence they came followed Ms Tagalong into the garden and into the chicken pen. Chip one fetched six eggs from the main pen and chip two found another one in the littlest pen. Chip three boldly grasped a chicken, a child from a chicken home obviously, with no qualms and inspected it curiously. Ms Tagalong noticed the covert look at the chicken tractor, made with loving care by Mr Block, and disdained by the community chickens. Time for its return maybe!

We all foraged through the garden and found herbs and chillis for Mrs Block to make supper with. Ms Mova joined us chatting but the cold wind proved too much even for hot little bodies who put back their sweaters and decided it might be time to bike home. The chickens huddled together all in the one pen strategically placed against the wind. They were probably glad not to have their feathers ruffled.

Ms Mova has not checked the forecast for this weekend's working bee but she assures me that the food will be hot, hot, hot. So come one and all to assist and complete the pizza oven around which we will be able to make merry in the months and years to come.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Winter wonders

We are in the middle of winter here; the chickens have shorter days to scavenge and forage so you can imagine how distressing it must have been for the poor little lady scurrying up and down in the second pen the other day wondering why she hadn't been let out with the others. Well, Ms Tagalong, nearly didn't let her out either.

Looking for a few moments reprieve from the stress and strain of moving, Ms Tagalong crept into the garden with an overalled Ms Shorts last weekend. Checking the pen for eggs Ms Tagalong was alerted by Ms Shorts to the distressed chook in the adjoining pen. Maybe Ms Mova had sleepily opened the pen and ignored number 11 who when released scurried rapidly out and hid amongst the privet bush. Surprised, Ms Tagalong would have expected her to run to the water, she crouched down and saw her scratching about and rolling eight hidden eggs.

So that was why we had so few eggs lately!

Ms Tagalong heard a colleague at work championing the flavour of strawberries that she had bought at one of the not-to-be-named supermarkets. She hugged herself joyfully and thought about the little strawberries she had spied on the plants in the garden. If the chickens can be dissuaded from taking a peck along with the snails and slugs, flavour would not be an issue. Ms Tagalong’s colleague would not be able to believe her taste buds, but shhh.. we shall keep it our little secret and wait for them to ripen naturally, no retardant gas, no picking too early.

Advice from whats cooking America says Strawberries do not ripen after they have been harvested, so choose strawberries that have been picked fully ripened. They should have bright red color, natural shine and fresh looking green caps.

Many myths and legends abound. Do we have any newlyweds in the neighbourhood? If only Ms Tagalong had known this last year she could have served cold strawberry soup at her nuptials like they do in regional France for an aphrodisiac. But then.. it is never too late. If you see someone crouching, keeping guard over the berries it might just be a French provincial chef or indeed, Ms Tagalong!