"Worrying about tomorrow means that you are missing some of today" Corey Allan of Simple Marriage

Friday, June 29, 2012

Primped and ready to go

I am all organised for my road trip back home to collect nieces.  Their room is all decked out with fairy lights for winter solstice (yes, it was 22 June, but close enough).  Bathroom, kitchen and lounge all clean and tidy.  Some meal plans in my head, and activity plans written down in a list.

My bag is packed (yes, it is only one night but I have to take old farm clothes with me, incase I need to do something with the horse), my hair is straightened, and my CD's are ready to go (I am not too sure about my CD player in the ute, that hasn't been working, but I live in hope).

Sunglasses, wallet, phone, camera, hat and gloves.

NO  COMPUTER this trip!  I'm doing 24 plus hours without it!  And only one small lens on my camera as well.

This is the lightest I have ever travelled.

Off to wash (early) lunch dishes, then time to hit the road!

Boo yah!  It's a gorgeous day!

The sun finally came out to play today!  Oh yeah, it was fantastic to have that giant warming orb back up in our skies.  So fantastic in fact that I managed to get all of our washing done, and line dried (of course) before the sun disappeared over the horizon.  One of the best winter days we have had so far.  Just lovely!

The room for my nieces is looking fabulous for their mid-winter break with us (I drive down tomorrow and bring them back Sunday - *GULP*).  There are so many fairy lights hung up that it actually makes the room very light.  I will definitely make sure that I unplug everything before I go to bed, so we don't have any fires.

We have also decided that they can build a fort in the lounge on Wednesday, and sleep in it that night.  Last time they visited we let them build a fort but did not allow them to sleep there, simply because I like to have strict bedtime hours, being 8.30pm during school holidays, and the next day I was driving them home and I didn't want them tired and cranky for that.   This time I thought I would let them have one late night, and Wednesday will be perfect because it gives them a couple of early nights before going home.  Wednesday is also the third State of Origin, so likely to be the one night TJL and I are up late as well.  It won't be going against any rules my sister might have, as her holiday rule is 'you can go to bed whenever you like'.  G tried that on with me last time, but she got the 'my house, my rules' statement, and she was actually really good about it.

TJL managed to milk Loretta (our heifer 'house cow') without my assistance this morning.  I'm glad it went so well since he will need to milk her on his own on Sunday (I won't be back with the girls until Sunday afternoon).  Fingers crossed the weather is fine on Sunday.  Even though it is only 350kms from our place to my sisters, the girls still like to have frequent breaks to stretch their legs, which is good as it makes me take breaks and stretch my legs as well.  I do need to get a couple of snack packs organised for the trip, but I think I will do that when I get to Mum and Dads tomorrow afternoon.

I watched a bit of the NBA draft today.  I don't know if you are supposed to cry during the NBA draft but I had a few tears when Thomas Robinson got drafted to the Kings as 5th pick.  What a story!  I am so glad for him, and his little sister, and I hope he enjoys his success.

Time to sit back and watch Highlanders v Chiefs in Super Rugby tonight.
(Obviously I am going through a sporting phase at the moment :)

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Day trip to Palmy North

We took a day trip to Palmerston North today so TJL could drop his race car engine off to get checked (for wear etc, I don't really know, it's boy car stuff).  I totally forgot my camera, but there really wasn't anything to shoot anyway.

We stopped for Burg.er K.ing in Wanganui for lunch (TJL's choice, I wanted Sub.way), which, by the way, had an extremely sticky floor, totally nasty.  Anyway I got a BK Chicken Meal (regular), and I was full before I had even finished my chips!  Seriously!  You are talking about a girl who could eat a BK Chicken Meal Large with onion rings.  Oh how my stomach must be shrinking - YES!
More on my weight later.

We then got to Palmy, dropped of the engine, and came straight home.  Totally uneventful.  TJL had the privilege of being educated about some of my music.  First he got to listen to my A+++ compilation (the second CD), then we had Robbie Robertson, followed by Slackstring, and ending with Joe Satriani, at which point TJL had had quite enough of my music thank you very much, so we went back to the radio, that I scanned through repeatedly until I found Newstalk ZB

It was a nice, relaxing day out, and now TJL has gone out to rugby training, so I have the evening in peace 
*contented sigh*

The only hiccough was I forgot to shut the gate when we got home and our little Stella-Dog did a quick disappearing act.  Took  A LOT of calling until she showed up again.  It was a bit of a worry because, even though she doesn't usually go anywhere near the road, she is pitch black, and so is tonight, so it would be super easy for her to get hit by a car.  But she is home, all safe and sound.  TJL gave her a bit of a growling, but you can't do it too much otherwise she won't come when you call.  If she was a child you could explain why she was in trouble.  Oh well.

So I really should be doing an official weigh in, but I'm not geared up at the moment.  What on earth does that mean?  It means my original starting point was a lie, and I would have to go in and fix it.  Thing is, my old scales must have been weighing around 4kgs lighter than they should have been.  This meant, when I thought I was 87kgs I was actually 91!  So when I started and was 93kg, I was possibly 97!!!  I need to be 87 for IVF #2.  So two weeks ago, when the scales arrived, I was 90kgs, and now I am 89!  So my diet is working!  500g a week is good, as in it is definitely something I can keep up.  And 2kgs is so doable, provided the weight keeps disappearing, so I am a lot less stressed.

I have to say that I am doing it easy now.  I used to eat breakfast, snack (usually a biscuit, or 2), lunch, snack, snack (biscuit, biscuit), dinner, snack (biscuit)  (oh yeah biscuit = cookie)
Now I don't eat breakfast until around 9am, sees me through to lunch, 3-4pm snack (3-4 pieces of fruit - at the moment this is kiwifruit, feijoa, apple, and mandarine), dinner (a lot less that I used to eat), and maybe a hot chocolate and a biscuit.

I know it was really hard at the start, and I can't even think as to how I did it, just got really tough with myself I think.  Told myself NO!  You need to STOP!  And I really am not good at saying no to myself!

And I am not missing out.  When we went out for dinner I had full on ice-cream, fudge sauce dessert.  I have had the occasional ice-cream.  I have had the occasional fastfood/takeaways.  Even when I stayed at Mum and Dad's I binged out on fudge etc, but THIS TIME I jumped straight back onto the wagon, and I have stayed there.

Yay for me!

And on a more somber note, I know that places in the USA need a lot of rain right now, to fight fires and drought.   I pray that God delivers you all some rain very soon.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Biting my tongue

Please do not judge me based on this post.  I am not ALWAYS like the following.  I'm just going through a phase right now.  I am mostly a nice person (I hope!)

I have a truly wicked tongue.  I really do.  My tongue blurts out all of my negative inner thinking about people.  People I know, family, friends, people I drive past, total strangers.

Gossip.  I despise it, yet I do it.

I am nasty and judgemental.  
I usually think that it's not hurting anyone.  I mean, I usually only tell TJL.  I am not spreading it far and wide.
But I am hurting one person, and that person would be me.

I think it stems from my own insecurities.  
Doesn't make it right, no sir-ee, but it is what it is.  

Trying to build oneself up by tearing down others.
It never works you know, it just makes you feel worse about yourself.

Truth be told I have been known to call myself out on it before - saying something about someone, and then having to admit that 'who am I to judge when I have similar, well ok worse, negative traits'.

Then the other day I read a blog post (I have tried to track it down, but failed miserably) about the wickedness of our tongues, and basically how one should think before one speaks.  There was a bible verse as well, but being very new to the gospel, I have no idea which one that was either.


So, over the last two days I have tried really, really hard to SHUT UP!  And I am doing ok at it, having the odd slip up of course, but I am surprised at how often I have negative thoughts about people.  
None of which is any of my business.  Most of which I have no back story for.  Most of which I have no real facts about.  Most of whom I don't even know.  Most are people that I see in the media.

And I judge them?!
Like it is my place to do so?!

But, and who doesn't like a but when it's in their favour?

 I am getting better.  
Each time such a thought enters my head I bite my tongue and think to myself -
 It is none of my business, 
It does not affect me, so
Why do I care?

And the usual answer is

Plain and simple.

All it is, is that I wish I had their clothes, their vacation, their car, their family, their confidence, their friends, their social life.
Not in a 'be them' kind of way, I just want what they have for myself.

Or I think that they should be living a life that I approve of, because, you know, I am just so perfect!

But I am not perfect, I am so sinful.
And so I am hoping that, with Gods help, I can begin to change my thinking around so that I am more concerned with what it is I am up to, and less concerned about comparing myself with what others are up to.  And if I perceive that someone has something that I want, and I consider them to be undeserving of that thing, then I need to release that to God as, lets face it, it is not MY judgement to make as to who deserves what.

And I need to keep my mouth shut and my tongue still about it.  
If you don't have anything nice to say, then don't say anything at all.
I will become a much nicer person because of it.
I will like MYSELF much more because of it.

As per usual, God directed me towards a teaching just when I was in need of it.  
His ways are not always so mysterious

Monday, June 25, 2012

Gearing up for nieces

I'm picking my nieces up this weekend, and bringing them here for the first week of the school holidays.  I have a list written of what we can do to entertain them (ages 8 and 5) which include movies, pools, and library visits.  I also thought that we could paint terracotta pots and then select a plant each to plant in their pots.  I also got a can of a spray lacquer that is a clear plastic, to make sure their artwork is sealed onto the pot (I hope).

My other plans include (if I get time) hanging our Christmas lights up in their room, and putting out the Christmas decorations, for a cosy mid-winter Christmas for them.  The main reason for this is because, with Christmas happening in the middle of Summer, and darkness not really happening until after 9.30pm at that time, you really don't get the full effect of the Christmas lights.  In fact, I am usually in bed before we really get to enjoy them.  I think it will be a nice surprise for them, if I manage to get around to doing it!

We were down to 1 biscuit in the tin, so I had to get myself into gear and bake another batch.  I read through the Edmonds Cookbook (of which every single kiwi household has one) but stayed with the tried and true (and favourite) - Afghans!

Just realised that I should have displayed them on a nice plate!

The recipe says it will make 30, but I only managed to make 15 (and they are a lot smaller than the ones I used to make, of which I would only manage to make 8!)

Afghan Recipe
200g Butter
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 1/4 Cup Flour
1/4 Cup Cocoa
2 Cups Cornflakes

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  
Sift flour and cocoa, and stir into creamed mixture.  
Fold in cornflakes.
Spoon mounds of mixture onto a greased oven tray, gently pressing together.
Bake at 180 C / 350 F (such a good book has temperature conversions!)  for 15 minutes or until set.
When cold ice with chocolate icing, and decorate with a walnut if desired (I don't have any).   


New sheets and wasted meats

Happy Monday

So excited, the sheets that I ordered a while ago finally arrived today (I was aware that they had to be back ordered).  They are the Teaberry ones from Ezibuy - TJL loves flannelette sheets and so do I, oh so snuggly in winter time.  In fact last time my parents visited even Dad commented on how warm their bed was, even without the electric blanket on!

The coolest thing is that they come in a rectangular plastic bag that zips up which is PERFECT to store my knitting wool in!  They even have little inner pockets that have the photo of the sheets slipped into, so I just slip that out and then I have a pocket for my needles, and other assorted accessories.


I have had to remove myself from the Ezibuy site, RIGHT NOW before I go off and buy more stuff, I'm shocking for spending, I really am!  And I just love new stuff, but hey, who doesn't.

Yesterday we decided to have bacon and eggs for lunch, all raised on our own farm so no battery foods here.  Anyway, I sent TJL out to the freezer to get some bacon, BIG MISTAKE, well actually in hindsight it wasn't, but at the time BIG MISTAKE.  I got the call ...

'I can't find any.  We REALLY need to get this freezer tidied, lets do it now!'

Seriously?  It's LUNCHTIME, and I'M  HUNGRY!

But out I went to assist  him.

It took us an hour.

And we threw out one wheelbarrow load of meat.  ONE  WHEELBARROW  LOAD

Old meat, freezer burned meat, unidentifiable meat.

The WASTE!  The absolute waste, which lead to the GUILT!  My goodness, we obviously have it too good if we are throwing out that. much. meat.

However, our freezer is now super tidy.  Poor TJL was not aware that if we are doing a job, we are doing it properly, so now all of the meat is in it's groups.  We have a giant (and when I say giant I mean GIANT) bag of mince, half a giant bag of casserole/stewing steak, and loads of other meats (all home produced).  Luckily I am heading home Saturday, to pick up my nieces for a weeks holiday with us, so I will take some of our excess for Mum and Dad, and my big Sis.  (We do always give them some when we first get a beast done).

And that is my happy Monday :)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

A different life

My mind is all over the place today.   

I have started and deleted this post three times already.

I had been wishing that I had lived my life differently when I came across this on the 

'Faith in God includes Faith in His timing'

And I now feel so much calmer. 

I mean, it's impossible to go back and relive parts of my life over, no matter how much I wish I could.  What is meant to be, will be, and while I have some power to at least try and pick the 'right' path so much of the result is beyond my control.  

So rather than fret, worry, and waste time about thinking about it, it is easier to just let things beyond my control go and leave them in Gods hands.  Lets face it, He is more likely to know what is right for me than I am.

And so, while I wish certain parts of my past had or had not happened, 
it is time to let go, and move on.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Whats happening?

Unfortunately there will be no holiday for TJL and I this year (or for the next few years if we manage to purchase a farm next year).  Loretta, one of our heifers, 'slipped' a couple of nights ago, so now we have one cow to be milked.  Just one.  *sigh*  She is a month early so the calf was either born dead, or died before we discovered her in the morning.  While I have been busy telling TJL that he still had a month of relaxing to go, it has all come to a crashing halt with Loretta needing to be milked every day from now on, not hard, just inconvenient.  I now need to come up with many ways I can use her milk.  I feel an attempt at cheese making coming on.  Stella (the dog) is pretty excited, as it means she will be getting her daily ration!  Loretta had her first ever milking this morning, and she did really well.  I patted her and kept her calm while TJL put the cups on, and while she is not super quiet as yet, I'm pretty sure she will be very quiet by the time the month is up and we start to get a few more cows in the shed.

TJL is off at rugby today.  Their team is doing a bus trip for once, giving me enough of an excuse not to go.  I don't drink, and the thought of being on a bus with young, drunken men, is NOT my idea of a good time (maybe 20 years ago it was, but not now).  It means that I can make what ever I would like for dinner - which will be a pork, rice and veges dish - and I am oh so hungry now!  It also means that I have NO IDEA as to when I will get the call to head into the village to pick him up.  Fortunately he very rarely does this so I am more than happy to do it.  I just hope it's not too late, I am not a night owl by any stretch of the imagination.

I have also been trying to knit!  I managed to finish a scarf for TJL, my first project since I was about 10, and probably the only one I have ever finished.

It is in Taranaki colours, but I do think it should have been a bit longer.  TJL think's it's fine, but next time I will definitely make a longer one.

My next project was to attempt a Halloween Cat Dishcloth, as per the instructions on One Crafty Mama's blog  Kelly's cloth is way better than mine, so I decided to link to hers.  Mine, well, it needs work and I would hate to ruin her good work by showing off my less than stellar effort.   Me, I need more practice!  So practice I shall.  It is actually a lot of fun, who knew?!


I am, sometimes, somewhat of an idiot.  I realised last night, during my sleep perhaps, that I am overloaded, and I have done it to myself.

On spur of the moments I have created websites, 6 to be exact!  And no, I don't keep up with most of them.

I also have created 5 Facebook pages (plus the one my sister made me an admin of, that makes 6).

And 3 Twitter accounts.

Oh, and had 3 blogs (plus 2 other 'blogs' on websites).

And Pintrest.

I do this when I get a bee in my bonnet and off I go.


So I realised in the early hours of this morning that I need to simplify, a lot!

All but 2 websites have been deleted.  The two I have kept are my Photography website and the website for the Taranaki Mountainairs (which I hope to possibly pass on to someone else to take care of next season, although now I have gotten rid of all the others I am not feeling quite so overwhelmed).

I now am in control of 3 Facebook pages (personal one, Photography one, and the Taranaki Mountainairs one.

I am down to two Twitter accounts - Personal one, and the Taranaki Mountainairs one.

My Pinterest is here.  That one will stay.

And I am down to 1 blog, this one.

Phew, I feel so much lighter!  I don't know why I felt the need to have so many different 'faces'.  I really don't need blogs for each different facet of my personality, that's just CRAZY!  And impossible to keep up with.  So now this blog will involve all of my crazyness.  Farming, housekeeping, gardening, dieting, infertility, horses, photography, all of it!  Right here. 

It is all going to be so much easier.


Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Hanging out at the folks

I'm not sure what it is about being back in your parents home that turns one back into a teenager, but it's just something that triggers in my brain.  I'm pretty sure I was a lot better than usual, but I still wasn't a grown up.  It is mostly because I like a bit of quiet, and my mother is a talker.  Ah well, such is life.

Today they have headed off for their 'holiday' of two nights away, while I take care of all of their animals, half of which are actually mine!  It will be pretty easy, I just hope that none of the old ones die on me, my fathers old dog in particular.  He is currently wrapped up under a blanket in the back porch, and I have been checking on him regularly, as the day is rather wet and cold.

I had planned to bring in my elderly horse, and give him a bit of a tidy up today.  Due to the weather that won't be happening.  Fingers crossed for tomorrow, or Friday, as I'm off back home on Saturday.  I have been down and given him a handful of food, and I will feed him tonight.  I have also been to the pharmacy and bought a large box of antihistamines so when I do get a bit of horse time I won't get sick.  I have decided to no longer let my allergies 'run' my life - inspired by the fact an olympic rider, and Bart Cummings are allergic to horses and didn't let that stop them.

Oh, it's raining heavily now!  Yuck!

I also got an urge to knit.  Why?  Who would know.  I haven't knitted since I was about 10, and I wasn't very good at it then.  Don't think I knitted anything without a hole or two in it.  Anyway, I have begun knitting TJL a scarf.  Well what else is a beginner knitter going to attempt??!!

I am also beginning to take 'drastic' measures in my weigh loss journey (which you can follow here on Must. Lose. Weight)  This is definitely not a journey that I am enjoying, but does that really need to be said?  Probably not.

Ack!  I hate diets!

Friday, June 01, 2012

Free range chicken

For the last 20 years or so I have only ever purchased free range eggs, unless absolutely desperate for eggs and there weren't any free range at the store, which only happened a couple of times.  In the last few years we have had our own free range chickens so have not had to purchase many eggs (we only have 3 chickens, 1 is retired, and of the other 2 usually one is laying while the other is not).


I didn't expand this moral compass towards chicken meat itself.  I can only think that this reason was because I put it in the 'it is just too hard to find' basket.

However, something finally triggered in my head the other day and I decided to make the effort to find free range chicken meat.  I did a quick google search, and then remembered that Countdown supermarkets now have free range chicken.

So, I got brave, and made a change of supermarket shopping venue, and we bought free range chicken (boned thighs, and a whole chicken), and I feel so much better about myself.  We had the whole chicken roasted last night, and while I think it might be a bit smaller than a battery farm raised hen, it was still fabulous!  The only chicken that I could not find in the supermarket, that was free range, was frozen chicken pieces.  Admittedly I didn't look that hard, but I did have a quick look.  I DIDN'T buy the other frozen chicken pieces though, as I do plan to see if I can find any internet shops from where I can buy it from.   They have to be out there somewhere, right?!

So yes, I am feeling pretty good about myself in this respect now.  I have always proclaimed to be an animal lover.  I don't like animals to be caged, hence the free range eggs buying.  And we raise our own beef, and pork.  And lamb/sheep in New Zealand are all paddock raised, so I had no animal welfare concerns in regarding these foods.  Chickens however, have a terrible life, and I really don't know why it has taken me this long to get my moral compass right on this one.

But hey, better late than never ah!