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

Tuesday, December 17, 2013


I've been working on my positivity lately.  I signed up to a few websites that email happy, positive emails on a daily basis.  And I watch the videos they send.

It's been great.

And I've been doing my own Christmas Advent on Facebook, with Christmas songs, which I discovered I failed at today as one of the songs I repeated!  C'mon, I only had to do 24 and I managed to stuff it up.  Hahaha.  Perspective, it's no big deal!

I also plan to do a 12 days of Christmas on Facebook involving charities that I like.

I've been really into charities lately.  I've always given to charities, but now I'm really stepping it up.  I think the fact we have been unable to have kids has meant that I am now focus'd on helping some of the worlds poorest.  Perhaps with the goal of actually travelling overseas one day, to volunteer with a charity somewhere for a while.

And I've now taken my positivity to the point if I find I'm following someone on Twitter who is just negative, or mean, or think they're funny when they are being rude, I try not to dwell on it, or what I could respond with, I stop following.

The, happy, end :)

Saturday, October 12, 2013

A week of learnings

This week has not been fun.  At all.  To keep it in perspective, it wasn't a terrible week where someone we know died, or got diagnosed with some terrible illness, or lost a fortune.  But it was a week of tough knocks.  Compounded by the fact it was my birthday, which still hasn't been celebrated.  However, rather than dwell on the negative (which I am inclined to do) I intend to learn things from it.

Firstly TJL was drilling, drill broke, cut his wrist, which resulted in a nights stay in hospital.  On my birthday.  If we weren't dairy farmers, this wouldn't really matter too much.  But we are.  And if TJL is out of action, it's my turn to step up.  I haven't stepped up at all lately, so enter PANIC mode, and lets be honest, tears and fears.  I needed to milk Monday night and Tuesday morning, at least, on my own.

Cue my in-laws, in-laws.  Yes, you read that right, my sister-in-laws parents-in-law stepped up to the plate and helped me milk Monday night (as the cows are currently being mated at night, and I have next to no ability to pick the ones needing to be mated).

What I have learned from this experience is that it is amazing the people who do step up to help (perhaps a bit less surprising are the ones that don't).  Obviously my in-laws in-laws will be receiving a big THANK YOU gift from us.

I also learned that I am more than capable of milking, if I need to.  And to make it easier on myself in future, it is time I stepped up big time and helped TJL out in the shed a few times a week, so I am confident in what I am doing, and so my arms keep strong.  Oh how my arms ached after my second milking.  After my forth milking they were beginning to get used to it.  

I also learned how hard TJL works.  It sounds stupid, but he just gets on and does it.  I'm a whiner, not proud of it, but I am.  I don't know how he does it.  No breaks.  Milks morning and night.  Everyday.  No days off, for MONTHS.  I MUST step up and help him.  I MUST.  I didn't even last a week, and that was with him in the shed helping me every day bar one morning.  How he managed to live on his own, and milk without a break an entire season is beyond me.  Although I have realised that I do need to step up and help him more on farm, I have, at least, been here to cook his meals, do the dishes, clothes washing, etc.  Before me he had to do it all!  He is one strong man.

We were also told something during the week which totally knocked our confidence, and made us feel pretty down.  I am not too sure what the learnings from this are.  It has inspired us to go and check out a few farms for sale during the week.  Definitely time to be our own boss, although it all comes down to whether or not we can get enough money together to purchase our own property.  It does get a bit depressing when you (well TJL) are working your butts off and it's still not good enough.  I also learned that I need to be TJL's biggest cheerleader in life, so slights such as these have a lot less sting.  The comment did unite us and made us stronger together.

Today is hopefully the last day of 'awww c'mon' as the pump in the cowshed played up twice this morning.  Then we discovered one of our calves in the neighbours property, and it was awfully difficult to get her back as there are no gates in the boundary fence.

In other news, I have been trying to find my passion in life.  And watching too much TV does not count!  Hopefully, if I work hard at it, I will discover what it is soon.

Monday, September 09, 2013

Ground hog day

It has been feeling like 'Ground Hog Day' around here lately.  Ah, the joys of dairy farming. 

Alarm goes off at 6am, I snooze it twice and get up at 6.20am.  Wash the previous nights dishes (just don't feel like doing it at night, I'm a bit more of a morning person), go out, feed calves, pick up calves, have breakfast, fill in time until 2.30pm when it's time to go out and feed calves again, walk dogs, cook dinner, go to bed, alarm goes off ...  This happens ev.ery.day rain or shine or hail or wind or weekend or weekday. E.V.E.R.Y  D.A.Y

Over it.

TJL has it worse. He gets up at 5am to milk, then works his arse off all day until 3.30pm when he milks again, and doesn't get in until 6.30-7.00pm.  He's a trooper, a work-a-holic, an energizer bunny.  He makes me tired.  And makes me feel guilty.

However, light is appearing at the end of the tunnel.  32 cows left to calve (out of 220) and I have been gaining back some energy to actually get housework, other than dishes and clothes washing, done.  Today, for example, I wiped down all the window sills, talk about fly graveyards!  Yuck!  I am also doing my best to get said housework done during ad breaks, it's actually amazing what you can do during an ad break, especially in NZ as the ads seem to go on forever!

And I am finally getting onto scanning all of my old photos.  Doing about 1 hour a day (ok so that was just over the last two days) so at that rate it's going to take a few years. Then there's all the negatives to start scanning. Plus grandparents old albums.  She's a big job!

And since I have scanned them to our desktop computer, not my laptop, I can't share here tonight.  But here are a few shots from the last couple of days.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

French knitting

I had been thinking recently, like just before our nieces visited, that how great would it be if I could find some wooden cotton reels and teach them how to do some good ol' French knitting.

Not long after the girls went home we had lunch at TJL's Mums home, for his fathers birthday, and she had wooden cotton reels, and they were all French knitting at the table.

She gave me two reels.

I love her!

This is actually my second go as one of TJL's nieces took the one I was doing during lunch.  I'm not sure what I am going to be doing with it, just using up woolen scraps at the moment.

And then I went onto TradeMe and bought 5 more reels.  Obsessed, I become, very quickly.

With the weather being awful today, I also got around to finishing knitting this hat.  It's actually a lot more purple than pink in real life.  And it's rather tiny, so I think I will be dropping it (and an identical bluer one) off to the SPCA shop.  I am sure there are small local babies/children that could benefit from them.

I now need to find a knitting project that I can make use of.  I was thinking a blanket, but that might be a bit ambitious for my beginner skills.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

NAIT Tagging

We had a big job yesterday, NAIT tagging the vast majority of our herd.  NAIT is all about having traceability for our animals - paddock to plate.  Because we are shifting to a new farm on June 1st, we had to make sure all of our cows were tagged, otherwise the trucks wont transport them.  Out of our herd of 170ish cows we ended up tagging 108. 

Ok, so when I say 'we' I mean TJL does the physical stuff and I did all of the recording of NAIT numbers to cow numbers, which then meant I had the fun job of entering onto the computer today.  The actually tagging was a bit stressful.  While the cows are totally used to being handled in their udder region, having TJL handling their ears was a whole other ball game, and the farm we are currently on does not have the best yard set up.  Fortunately there were only a few mishaps, and TJL didn't get hurt (which was my biggest fear).  I am definitely glad that this is one job over and done with.  As from two years ago, with the introduction of NAIT tagging, we have tagged them at the calf stage, which is a heck of a lot easier and relatively stress free. 

I certainly didn't have time to get any photos of the job, but rest assured, there was a LOT of cow poo to clean up at the finish.  Not to mention the super loud mooing and bellowing as they wanted to be out of the yard and eating some lovely fresh grass.  The pet cows were by far the worst, as they have exactly ZERO respect for us, and if they don't want to go somewhere, they'll just push past, so we had a wee bit of trouble with a couple of them - Georgia in particular, she was being super naughty, but she was super annoyed at not being fed.

And now it's back to packing boxes, and trying to get the blasted oven clean - TMI but it's just nasty!

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Knocked around

Man have I been knocked around the last few weeks.  Turns out that my 'man cold' was a virus that really lay me low.  The first week I just lay around on the couch, with little energy to do anything.  I just felt really awful, developed a cough, and had a ton stuff to cough up.  The second week we had 3 of our nieces to stay for the holidays.  I continually thought that I would get better 'tomorrow', so I went over to HB and picked them all up, and drove back home.  The next tomorrow I was worse.  I couldn't get an appointment to see my doctor for 3 days, as the clinic were short a doctor, so I took a punt and went to the emergency room.  Unbelievably my wait in the emergency room was an hour tops!  I had thought I would be lucky if I was seen within 3 hours, so I was super stoked.  Dr told me I had a 2 week virus, so should be better in 4 days time.  I felt relief as my mother had put it into my head that I had a chest infection and might get pleurisy.  Dr gave me a prescription for antibiotics, even though they wouldn't 'cure' the virus, he said I could take them if I wanted to.  I wasn't going to but then my ear blocked, so I figured why not.  I can't remember the last time I had an antibiotic, aside from one I had to take prior to our last IVF.  My ear stayed blocked for the week.  Oh joy!

So, for week two I struggled along with the girls.  I feel really bad, as usually I do arts and crafts with them, etc, and for the week I just didn't.  It also meant that they got away with staying up a bit late, and with being totally messy kids, as I just didn't have the energy to get after them to make them behave.  They weren't too bad, but the mess, ay ay ayyyyy!

So week two looked like this:

Monday - travel from HB to Taranaki with three talkative girls
Tuesday - emergency room visit, took girls to pools
Wednesday - girls painted mugs, took girls for a riding lesson
Thursday - took girls to The Croods 3D, which was fantastic.  Loved it!
Friday - took girls to the pools, let them build a fort in the lounge, which they slept in
Saturday - took girls to speedway at PN to watch TJL race, and stayed late for fireworks, then drove them home to HB - arrived at midnight
Sunday - returned home to a very messy house

Current status, slept a lot Monday and Tuesday, feel better today (Wednesday), but unfortunately have pulled a chest muscle due to so much coughing so every time I now need to cough I am in intense pain.  Suck!

Girls playing on stage at Wanganui, Monday

Girls running down hill by stage at Wanganui, Monday

G riding Toddy, Wednesday

K riding Willie, Wednesday

T riding Reddy, Wednesday

Monday, April 22, 2013

Kerre Woodham's Musings from Middle Age

I just finished reading Musings from Middle Age by Kerre Woodham.  And I did enjoy most of it.   It actually taught me a lot too.

If I wasn't in the headspace I am currently in it might have been a different story - but let me do a quick overview first.

Essentially it is a book for women over 40 (a category which I just fit into), and just how life goes at this stage in your life.  How you become 'invisible' to society.  Men are hitting on the younger ones kind of theme.  Of course this is coming from a 'celebrity' who is blissfully unaware that some of us have spent their entire lives being pretty much invisible, but thats okay with me.  Essentially she covers how women age.  There is humour mixed in with helpful advice, which I thought made it quite a unique read.

The part where I might have struggled is that she, of course, deals with empty nest syndrome.  And it did feel like she referenced to it quite a lot.  Of course, she has a daughter, and it's what she knows.  So if one was not in the right headspace to deal with such topics it may have been upsetting.  However, I am in the right head space, and she certainly intersperses this with tales about her friends that are childless, and/or single etc, so I never felt like I was isolated from the topic.  

Her book also highlighted for me that there are older women, who's husbands may have died and all of their children live overseas, have been left isolated as well.  It showed me, reminded me, that just because people do have children it is NOT a guarantee of your children being around forever.  Really, regardless of whether you have children or not, at some point you will be left alone, either as a couple or single.  So in that case we are far better to ensure we develop and maintain adult relationships to see us happily through these times.

It has given me a bit of a kick in the pants to get back out there and get social.  I have sat around assuming that I would get pregnant and then, woo hoo, instant fellow mummy friends.

That ain't happening so now its time to get busy and find a way to make some new friends, and to solidify, cement, renew old ones.  Trouble is I am hopeless at friendships.  I'm good at making small talk briefly, but forming friends and having them long term, I suck at it.

So would I recommend this book.  Yes I would, as long as you are happy to handle hearing mum stuff. I honestly laughed out loud numerous times, just one of those snorts, eye watering, hold in laughs, but in hindsight I wish I had just let a loud belly laugh instead.

Both my Mum and sister will be reading this book next.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Why farm dogs are outside dogs.

I'm not sure if my photos will do my title justice.  Lets just say Max-a-million was FILTHY this morning, after having chased some birds into the sh*i ponds.

 It's a bit hard to tell, but he is wet, wet, wet, and he's wet with diluted cow poo.  I had thought it was just mud splash from the paddock, but TJL came home and told me off for not hosing Max off as he'd been in the sh*t ponds.  Ooooops!  TJL hosed him off, such a great guy.

It was hard trying to get a photo as he just thought that he should have pats.  Yeah right Max!  Filthy, stinky dog! And that is why they are outside dogs.  YUCK!

On a good note we (the dogs and I) managed our afternoon walk without the use of a lead for Max!  I still took one just in case, but it went really, really well.  Of course there are no rabbits around at the moment (knocks on head, touches wood) for him to bolt after, and the birds he chases just fly up.  Todays walk was so, so, so much better than any other walks we've had.  Of course it is a combination of time spent walking him on lead, ie a couple of months!, and me learning to chill out a bit, and not panic when he gets 'to far away' from me.  

I have to say I was just totally ignorant of the fact that being an older dog meant that he needed time to learn to trust me.  I don't know if ignorant is the right word as logically I know this, but at the time, I dunno, it just didn't cross my mind THAT much.  I was just so focused on everything he was doing wrong, and that was making my life with him miserable.  So, so, so stupid.  And at the start I did lose my cool a wee bit, and when I did you could see him just totally switch off, no eye contact, just a real cold shoulder.  I am so thrilled at how far we have now come.  Part of my losing my cool was me panicking about the trouble he was causing, and part of it was my totally ridiculous attitude that 'I've rescued you from the SPCA, you ungrateful mutt'.  A couple of times I did threaten him with being put to sleep, as I didn't think he would be any good (sometimes they just aren't), but I was also aware that at the early stages it was totally my fault, as I wasn't training him right.  Turns out I just needed PATIENCE and to remember that it was going to take TIME.  And by time I'm talking MONTHS not weeks (or hours).  Unfortunately I do like instant results, I just need to be reminded that animals don't give you that.

Life is a learning curve.

I took a couple of photos of the small spare room today.  It's pretty sparse, since we are moving and I have packed up most stuff, but you get a general idea.  We did not do the 'decorating'.  It's not our house to decorate.

You can see in this first photo how small the room is.  It is as wide as the bed is long, and where the heater is you can see where the door stop for the wardrobe is, and I'm standing in the door.  Where you see the light on the wall is NOT where I plan to have the head, as I don't like heads by windows, incase you get a wee bit of a draft etc. Originally the bed went along that wall by the window.  I think only one niece has ever slept in it, and that was for one night.

This photo was taken from standing in the wardrobe door.  The pillows are new, hence they are SUPER DOOPER high.  And they don't have their proper pillowcases on, as they haven't arrived in the post yet.  Hopefully tomorrow.

So this room is super tiny.  Probably more of an office size.  Once we move I hope to maybe paint the bedside table, to give furniture renovation a go.  I plan to start super small and then, if all goes ok, move onto bigger things.  The lamp I bought looks so TINY.  But it will do, for now.  And you can see the window up above the bed head. That window leads to the hallway.  Oh yes, yes it does.  And that is so when you turn the lightswitch on in the hallway, the light in the bedroom comes on and shines into the hallway.  Yep.  That's how it works.  There isn't an actual light in the hallway, it's in the bedroom.  Fortunately, this being such a tiny house, and we don't actually use the hallway unless we have guests, and we're moving, so it doesn't really matter.

So, if you haven't noticed, I am slightly pre-occupied with our upcoming shift.  Today I packed away plastic containers, and recipe books.  Tomorrow, I need to get more boxes.

So excited!  (I actually am).

Friday, April 19, 2013

Sick again??!! Wot whaaaat?

Was feeling crappy again today.  Twas only about a week ago that I had my man-flu.  Today I just had kind of a niggley throat, and was rather tired, so spent the majority of it on the couch dozing and watching television.

Feeling a lot better now, it was just exhaustingly weird.

I did manage to achieve two things.

One, shopping again.  Via infomercials - no, no, no, no MJ, but alas yes.

Turbo Fire has sucked me in.  90 day risk free, money back guarantee, sucked in.  This happens to me everyone once in a while, like once every 5 years or so.  But TJL thought it looked pretty good, and heck, that's all the permission my spendy spendy pea brain needs.

So it should be here in a week.  11 work out DVDs with 13 workouts, exercise bandy thing, tips and a guide.  Of course I went for the delux offer that has 4 more DVD's, weighted gloves, a jump mat and a journal. 


 ... a free 11 piece knife set.  I KID YOU NOT.  I had the option of a knife set or Thin Lizzy, fortunately I do know myself somewhat and know that the knife set will get far more use.

It does look really good, in that the music seems totally pumped up and the sweat seems to pour off the participants.  I also like the fact that it has a programme for the 90 days, ie what DVD to do on what day, which is what I need as when spoiled for choice I tend to sit around wasting time just trying to make the choice, and then end up doing nothing because it's just too hard.

We shall see how I go.

The other thing I did was rearrange the small spare room, and get it ready for the girls visit in 8 days time.  Stupid thing is that I now have the bed in the position I wanted it all along.  I hadn't been sure if it would fit or not.  With help from TJL it does.  5 years of hating where it was, 6 weeks of having it right.  Better late than never, yes?


Thursday, April 18, 2013


I do love to shop.  Unfortunately I really can't afford to, but I'm naughty and shop anyway.


But I use any excuse, I'm not a total spend-a-holic but I do just love to buy.  

First up I got Mothers Day cards.  One for my Mum and one for TJL's.

This is the one for TJL's mum.  If you can't quite read it, it says Mum, I realise it wasn't easy raising me ... (inside) The best and brightest are always a challenge.  It's so very, very TJL, and since he was a premie he definitely wasn't easy at the beginning, and he definitely thinks he's the best.  Of course I buy a card for TJL's mum and dad each and every year, whether or not he gets it to them is another story.

 This is for my Mum.  I think this one is a little easier to read.  And again, it's totally appropriate.  Even though I'm 41 I still rely quite heavily on their advice and help.  And I was definitely a difficult child, very very headstrong and stroppy.

Since I was in a bookshop (Paper Plus - my favourite) I also bought an Oprah magazine.  I haven't had one of those for ages.  TJL read it while I was in The Warehouse buying ...

Three cute little bowls.  I will be using these for M'n'Ms, mini marshmellows, and broken up flake chocolate for the girls to put on their sundaes.  After that they will be great for dipping sauces etc, if I ever have anything that needs dipping.  Or candle holders.  Or just for future sundae making.  $3.00 each

I needed new socks.  I love these socks, super dooper cosy.  My gumboots do have a habit of chewing through them rather quickly, but at $10.00 for 3 pairs who's complaining?  Actually I am, for some reason I totally bought the wrong size, noticed only after I removed the tag and wrapper. They will fit TJL if they are totally unsuitable for me. 

Cutsie little column heater.  It's not very big but should be ok for the small spare room we have here when the girls visit.  And I think our 'new' house has 3 bedrooms and an office.  I am assuming that the office is quite small, so new heater should fit perfectly in there.  $40.00, sweet!

Finally I bought a small desk lamp for the small spare room for when the girls visit.  Noticing a theme anyone.  The small room's light switch is in the hallway, as I think the hallway was formed out of the small room to go down to the added on bedroom (hence why the small room is actually TINY).  The wall is topped by glass allowing the light from the small room to also go through the hallway.  Does that all make sense?  Anyway, a lamp was needed so whomever is in that room can actually turn a light on and off from in there, rather than stumbling into the hallway.  $10.00

I also got some teaspoons.  I was looking for little ladle-like spoons but couldn't find any, and since I was in the spoon section I just HAD to buy something.

I also got David Bowies latest CD, which I have left in TJL's ute.  I do like me a bit of Bowie.

After I shopped myself, not out but sufficiently satiated, we headed to Shakee Pear for some lunch.  I had potato and bacon rosti's, served with what I think was a rhubarb chutney and sour cream.  Was scrummy.  Crazy thing was I had thought about ordering a side of fries, but SO glad that I didn't.  Yeah, that would be me.  Have a potato main served with a side of ... potato.  Dork much??!!  Why yes, yes I am.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Hurrah for a practice run

I saw a great idea for the girls to make when they are here, aquariums with blue jelly, and other stuff.  Of course the recipe I saw had fruit as the other stuff, and I went for lollies.

I am so, so, SO glad that I did a trial run through first as EPIC FAIL.  Seriously.

Side view

So from looking at it, it didn't turn out too bad.  The MnM's (gravel) lost their colour, and the mushroom lollies (plants) lost a bit of their coconut, but the chocolate fish handled it all ok.  The jelly was a bit dark, and my container may have been a bit smallish, but the look wasn't the fail.

Top view

Where the MnM's lost their colour I had a grey watery liquid, which was a partial fail.  The big fail was the taste.  Seriously, I figured regardless of what it might look like, the taste would be fabulous.  But no.  Super sweet, and I can do sweet, but this was just off the scale awful sweet.  I don't think that the coconut helped.   Of course TJL and I managed to choke the stuff down.  I should have thrown it out but I hate waste.  And now I know why the original recipe had fruit and a small amount of chocolate.

You live and learn.

So we won't be making blue jelly aquariums with the girls.  We will make jelly, and have lots of other stuff, and they can make themselves ice-cream sundaes instead.  I LOVE ice-cream sundaes.  (If you haven't worked it out already when I say that we will be doing this kind of stuff 'for' the girls, it's really all for me!)

On a happier note, some little cross-stitches arrived in the post today.  It was such a surprise as I ordered them from the USA and wasn't even sure that they would arrive before the girls went home, so super stoked that they arrived a week after I ordered them.  Big ups to JuliesXstitch.com, very impressive service (and yes I have emailed her to thank her).

... Puppy ...

... Butterfly ...

... Fish...

I have wrapped them up in mermaid paper and numbered them (I have no idea what number corresponds to which set) and when the girls get here I am going to have them draw numbers out of a hat (maybe 1-15), and they keep going until they get a 1, 2 or 3, and what ever number they get, they get that package.  I'm hoping it will save arguments over which one they want.

So kicking myself for not ordering myself a set.  Might get around to doing that soon, or may just buy one here in NZ, though choice and cost may limit me!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Guest baskets

In a couple of weeks we will be having 3 nieces to stay for a few days of the school holidays.  Two are my sisters girls, and one is my cousins daughter.  Ages 6, 9 and 10.

To make them feel welcome I decided to make them a gift basket each.

So the first step was to locate said gift basket.  I had a wee bit of a search around and discovered these brightly coloured, and what I consider a wee bit funky, rubbish bins, which will be a lot more useful long term than an actual basket.  Score 1!  Oh, and they were $3.00 each, so inexpensive.

Funky monkey rubbish bin.

Then it was a matter of finding loot to go into the gift bins.  I found out the girls favourite colours from their mothers, to give me a bit of a theme for each girl, and so they wouldn't mix up who's was who's.

I had an idea to get them a named facecloth each, from memory they were around $13.00, so a bit expensive, but great quality.  To go with the 'bath' theme I also bought them a couple of soaps, and a loofa(?).

Bath time!

Aside from liking clean kids, I always like to get a wee bit crafty with them so I got mugs that they can paint, then bake in the oven, they were $12.50 ish each.  I also got a bumper activity pad, stickers, plain pads, crayons, and a 6x4 photo frame.  I'm hoping to get a nice photo of the three of them, and pop that into their frame so they can remember their visit with us.  I have a ton more arts and crafts stuff for them to use, so they are not limited to this small amount.

Artsy craftsy.

And one can't forget to have a few chocolates.  I got a few Easter Eggs on sale a couple of days after Easter, so have bagged them up, and added a lollipop on top.  We got the lollipops from the local Pizza place a couple of nights ago, which was lovely of them.  And to save myself from eating yet more sugar, what better way to get rid of them.  I also have them a 'proper' Easter Bunny Easter Egg in the fridge for them, as I haven't seen them since before Easter.

Yum, yum, yum.

So here it is all displayed out on the table.  It has cost me around $150.00 I guess, but since we don't have kids I don't mind.  TJL has a bit of a heart attack about it, but I point out that we don't have kids, so in the grand scheme of things, we can afford it;

Loot, glorious loot.

Heres the three bins all full to the brim ...

... and a close-up.

The girls will be here for 3 full days, plus 2 days of travel (3.5 hour journey, extended by bathroom and play breaks).  One day we will go to a movie, I'm hoping to go to the Crood's, but we shall see.  One day we will go to the pools, as T & G always have a good time there, so no doubt K will too.  And I've booked them in for a riding lesson for one of the days.  G and K are super excited about the riding lesson, T (the 6 year old) is a little less sure, but I'm sure she will be fine. 

The sheets are washed.  The duvet covers are washed.  It will be all go in 2 weeks time.  

Saturday, April 13, 2013


We are moving to a new farm in around 6 weeks time, June 1st.  So I've started packing up the house, which I am actually enjoying.  So far I have 3 bags of stuff to go to the SPCA shop for them to sell, or use for the animal cages in the case of old sheets etc, plus I have discovered stuff that I couldn't locate when I needed, like an electric blanket for the single bed.  Of course I found the two I knew I had somewhere the day after I bought a new one.  Oh well ...

I have also sorted through our multitude of towels.  Why I waited until now I'm not too sure, as stuffing, shoving, pushing, and forcing clean washed towels into our overstuffed only cupboard was just stupid.  I have now cut the house towels down to around 20, and bagged up all the other old ones to be used as dairy shed towels.  Any ripped or torn ones have become mini-sprint towels (dirt track racing = filthy car cleaning).  I have room in our towel cupboard.  Oh yeah!

The trouble with packing is that now an area of our house now makes it look like I'm a hoarder, and truth be told I am a bit of a hoarder (see towel comment above), just not the 'no space left to walk in the house, old newspapers, animal faeces' hoarder.

Taadaa!  Messy much??!!

I use rubbish bags for sheets, towels, blankets etc.  Much easier to 'squash-in' a bag of soft stuff when moving, than extra boxes.  This would be my much travelled, many moves opinion.  Plus they are awesomely handy when unpacking at the other end, and you need a rubbish bag.  See, I know what I'm doing.

Aside from the linen cupboard I have also emptied my closet, and the spare room closets (mostly, one still has Christmas decorations in  it, just need a huge box to put them all in).  TJL's closet is still to go, but I won't start on that one until he has had a wee bit of a holiday, he will need to help or I will throw out something he likes, whether he has worn it in the last five years or not.

Unfortunately I am having to store all of this packed up stuff in my office area of our secondary lounge, which is a bit of an eyesore should anyone visit.  This is because I can't store them in one of the spare bedrooms until the girls (nieces) have been and gone.  Once that has happened I will definitely move all this stuff into the large spare room, which will be awesomely handy for moving, ie has doors that leads to the porch, to right onto the driveway. Perfect!  Until then, we shall survive with the embarrassing mess.


One of the great points about shifting is that you do end up going through everything you own.  This means you can make note of what you do need to replace, and/or get rid of a multitude of junk that you just don't use.  It's pretty cathartic.  And quite eye opening.  I guess if you are a regular spring cleaner you actually do this annually.  And while I'm inspired right now to do it annually, truth be told, I probably won't.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


I have had man flu for the last 24 hours.  Yes, that's right, man flu.

I hate, hate, hate feeling anything other than fine and dandy, so I get all very woe is me, it's all about me, feel sorry for me, feed me, bring me water, I need a blanket.

Yep, I'm pathetic.  I get man flu.

And the worst thing is how you end up feeling so greasy!  Or is that just me?  I have had a shower today, which made me feel better, but I'm back to feeling greasy again already.  Might just be the lip balm ...

But, as I said, luckily I only get it for 24 hours, so it's going.

I wasn't totally useless today.  I did drive the tractor while TJL sprayed the drains.  I did it, but I wasn't happy as I was FREEZING (there was a very cold wind), and my nose kept running.


I had planned to walk the dogs down the back only.  It's flat, but it meant that Max wouldn't get off leash.  I got a wee way down and remembered TJL had sprayed the cutting, so up the hill we went instead.  So Max got some off lead time, and he was so good!  I was so impressed!  But I'm not getting carried away, there were no rabbits to chase once again, so *phew* yet again.

Got a call from the adoption/foster lady today.  Something I had totally forgotten we had done, it feels like it was so long ago.  It did get me thinking about fostering again.  But I just don't know.  Something I was so sure about doing, I am no longer really thinking about.  

Will take some time after our shift to work things out, but at the moment I'm kind of obsessed with our move.  5 years and an entire farm to pack up.


Monday, April 08, 2013

Getting braver

Our new dog, Max-a-million is an absolute handful.  We have only had him for 3 months so I really shouldn't expect miracles, but man, he is HARD work.

Of course, having had a bit of trouble with him, I haven't exactly been brave, so a lot of it is my fault.  And I don't spend THAT much time training him, but still ...

He's not dangerous, in case that is what you were thinking, but he is FAST and if he gets onto a scent, his ears switch off.  And then if he actually see's the cause of the scent, he's off and he's not coming back.  Definitely no ears in this case.

He's not so bad with the birds, they just fly away and he watches, and gives up.

Rabbits are another story,  Maxi is just gone, gone, gone.  Fast.  And I mean SUPER FAST.  He outruns the quad bike when TJL is driving it.  He's fast!

And so most of his walks are spent on a 15M rope, which is a shame when we live on a farm and he could be having a lot more exercise.  But we have pregnant cows, and 6 month old calves, and dairy farm fencing, which means access to neighbours pregnant cows is super easy.  And so he spends his walks on a lead so we don't have any chaos.

He does have free rein around the house of course, which is better now I have blocked his latest escape route.  Fortunately when he does escape, it's just to go down to the milking shed to scavenge any old milk he can find, which is NOTHING since we have now dried off.

However, the last three days I have let him off lead for walks in a few of the Western paddocks, once I have checked that the neighbours haven't got stock in neighbouring paddocks.  I'm so, so brave, and so far, so good.  We haven't encountered a rabbit yet, which will make me panic.  But I'm happy he has had a bit more of a chance to have a run and a good ol' sniff around.

Part of training is getting him to come to my whistle, at which point he gets a liver treat.  He loves his liver treat (ol' fatty dog Stella loves them more and just sits at my side waiting for me to blow the whistle so she gets one).  He does ignore the whistle when on a scent though, so we still have a lot of work to do.  Biggest trouble is that I can't always get a sound out of my whistle, and I really don't have anywhere to practice, as I expect him to come every time he hears it, and he's to get a treat every time he comes when he hears it, so I can't practice blowing it when he's within earshot, which is all the time.

Why oh why do I get myself into these situations! 
I should stick to puppies and kittens.  
Oh, and the chickens have been 'attacking' me at meal times too. 

Friday, April 05, 2013

Somewhere in-between

Living in limbo is just plain boring.

Mentally I have fully adjusted to living sans child.  Yep, I'm going for sans child as my status, my label, my grouping.  Childless sounds depressing, child free sounds by choice, and I am neither, I am sans child.  Happy with my life, even though it wasn't my choice, my dream, my plan.

However we still have one embryo to go.  I really can't be bothered 'using it'.  I'm 41.  Life is a bit busy at the moment so by the time we do get around to 'using it' I'm probably going to be 42.  And based on my track record, it won't stick and we will have 'wasted' another couple of thousand (give or take a few hundy).  I could buy myself a horse with that $2k!  Or a new wardrobe.  Or a dining table.

'Using it' in reference to the embryo seems to be the totally wrong terminology, like I actually don't give a damn, but to be perfectly honest I actually don't.  I do apologise if this does offend anyone out there that stumbles upon this, but I'm just so over the whole thing, and am happily moving on with my life sans child.  I have life plans which all involve being sans child.  And from what I've been witnessing lately, having no children sure seems so much easier, and freer, and quieter and cheaper! 

We will use it, the embryo.  And I will roller coaster once more, between hope and reality.  And when it fails to work this final time I will be sad.  But it will be temporary.  I have such a view to my future that a negative result will be a mere bump in the road rather than a huge crevasse, as it has been in the past.

But what it does mean for me, at the present, is that I actually don't fit into any grouping.  I read more childless blogs than infertility blogs these days, but until this final embryo is used, this final TTC chapter is written, I'm in limbo, not able to fit completely into any group, so I hang on the sidelines, observing but not contributing.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Snap Happy

The best thing about beginning the 365project.org is that I am finally taking photos daily.  I had started with just an everyday snapshot album to basically journal my everyday life.

I then added an infertility album because I felt like journaling this part of my life, which will be fixed forever during this year.

Then today, after checking out a few other albums, I decided to add an actual photographic album so I actually concentrate and work on getting a good shot everyday, rather than just documenting my life.

So here five of the 47 shots I took today.  Just the ones I liked, kind of random, which is totally me.
 Max a'Million - kind of my new favourite subject.  Makes me feel guilty about Stella-D.  Must make more of an effort to photograph her.  Not that she cares if I take more of Max than her, she is just a dog.

 Here he is again, posing on the hillside before he got onto the scent of a Pukeko, and ignoring my calls to 'COME MAX'.

 Lunch!  Bacon, mushroom and cheese omelet.  Twas good, real good!

Sun setting behind the oil rig that is just up the road from us, ie I essentially took this shot from the end of our driveway.

Moon rising, over clouds lit by setting sun.

I am actually beginning to get back into my photography again.  Fan-flippin-tastic!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Milkings sorted

It's taken a LONG time, but TJL finally said that he would like to do the morning milkings, and I am to do the majority of the afternoon milkings.  I am so glad that he has FINALLY made a decision, as I HATE, HATE, HATE not knowing what is happening with my day, ie: in the 'old days' TJL would let me know at 1pm that he wanted me to milk at 3pm.  I don't do well on short notice, so very rarely milked.

This new routine is great at 5.00am when I am merrily sound asleep, and continue to be that way for another hour or two.  This new routine is not so great when I am in the shed at 3pm and it is STINKING hot and I'm sweating my ass off.  Of course sweating my ass off is a good thing as my ass (and a lot of other parts of me) needs to disappear somewhat.

Last night I did a bit of a internet search in regards to training Max a'Million, and one thing really clicked with me, and that is he needs to burn off some energy before being put on a leash, or getting a bit of training.  Fortunately, at the moment, the paddocks behind the house are empty of stock, so I walked the dogs there before we got anywhere near the cows.  It seemed to work a bit, but I need to exercise him a bit longer.

 Max a'Million enjoying a bit of speed work

Maple, one of our most gorgeous cows.  TJL calls her Mabel, and she can be a right numpty PITA, as all things beautiful can be.

Periwinkle, out of Destiny.  Possum, out of Monkey.  Gemma, named after a niece

Stella-D hunting the hills for dem pesky rabbits

This is our oldest chicken Red.  Red is about 12 years old, or possibly more, and at the moment I think she is only 1 of 2 out of 5 chickens laying us an egg every other day.  GO  RED!!  Our chickens are let out of their coop between the hours of about 6.30am to 7.30pm, so the other chickens may be laying elsewhere that I have not discovered yet.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Gorgeous day here today

Well it's a Taranaki stunner here today.  The girls are up grazing on one of the hill paddocks, a paddock that I HATE due to it being quite easy for an accident to happen to one of them.
As you can see by the picture above, it will only take a slight bunt and cow 130 will be down over the bank.  Why, why, why they are happy to eat down there I will never know.  If I was a cow, I'd be up the top of the hill, or around on the safe side.
The sensible cows eating on the sensible side.

I have also had the fun job of paying the bills today.  My word there were a lot, and they were LARGE.   The good thing with me paying the bills is that I am starting to take a LOT more care as to where I spend my money.  Horrible, frightening stuff.

And on my walk back from the shed this morning I stumbled across this tiny egg, randomly on the side of the tanker track.

How it got there is a complete mystery to me, and I did nearly keep on walking by, but I'm glad I did decide to go back and take a quick snap of it.  It is just a tiny, plain white egg, so have no clue as to what bird even laid it in the first place.

Today, I'm just feeling random, including this post.