mushrooms, weaving and tasty failures


















We enjoyed our first flourish of mushrooms, they inundated us for a week or so then vanished! Charlie says they’ll pop up again as it’s only early in their season. Hopefully they do as wandering around our very own paddocks (and yes I still pinch myself when I say that!) collecting a basket full of fresh field mushrooms for breakfast with my hubby and my son was one the best Sunday mornings here so far.

What beautiful days Autumn gifts us with, foggy crisp mornings and warm golden afternoons. I just can’t tell you how beautiful the hills look now, my photos really don’t do it justice. They are blanketed in a gorgeous shade of lime green as the fresh new grass grows thanks to the sun-rain-sun autumn weather. If you pick out the bright mid blue in a pack of coloured pencils, you could draw the sky, it’s been picture perfect. The morning sky has been peachy oranges and as the sun drops in the late afternoon it usually turns a soft pastel dusky pink.

The fire has been roaring through the chilly evenings and keeping us toasty warm. The weekends are full but we are making sure to squeeze in our craft/sanity time. This lovely long weekend just gone I finally took my weaving off the loom. It’s been finished and waiting for its freedom hanging, for over a year – maybe even a year and half. So slack! Of course I couldn’t string up (or warp for you weavers) the loom quick enough to have another go. I’ve had this idea floating around my head since we’ve been here, of trying to capture the vibe of our rolling green hills into a weaving. I’ll let you know how I go, could be a year or two! Some craft happens quickly, other craft takes forever.

Just like sometimes things work out perfect, yet other times there’s epic fails. I had a big fail on my first attempt at Crabapple Jelly recently. Admittedly I didn’t use crabapples so there be my first error I suppose. And I’m a bit loose on following recipes to say the least. I won’t bore you with the other stuff ups I made like not measuring how much water I used to cover the apples, therefore ending up with twice as much as liquid as I should have for the weight of apples etc etc. I did enjoy a glorious afternoon of ignorance as I photographed my pretty little jars of blush coloured jelly before I realised they were still very liquidy after many hours and not jelly like at all. They were a little cloudy despite me being super careful not to squash the pulp and allowing it to drain overnight, but I was ok with that as it was my first time making it after all. I lived in hope overnight, thinking maybe by morning they’ll be set. Um no, this soft pink apple syrup would not become jelly no matter how long I waited and how hard I wished. So, with my make lemon curd when life gives you lemons attitude, I dug out the ice-cream maker and turned my flop into a delicious sweet and tart apple sorbet. I even popped some stewed rhubarb in a batch and made an apple and rhubarb sorbet. Quite the tasty failure. Not what I had planned, but then life’s like that isn’t it?

May your kitchen flops reincarnate as something tasty too x

one perfect autumn morning

















A lush fluffy blanket of fog surrounded our home this morning… I raced outside with my camera… boots with no socks… pj’s with my faithful alpaca jumper… the fog is thick and damp.. wet on my face and frizzing my hair… it rolled up the hills… tumbling and vanishing before my eyes… and when the sun rose it illuminated the mist… sunrays met tiny droplets of moisture and reflected light in all directions… breathtaking … flocks of birds soared high the new blue sky… birdsong filled the air and my heart with joy… I was torn between looking up and looking down… checking not to step on the mushrooms that are multiplying faster than we can eat them… oh what a delight to spot their white tops peeking through the dewy grass… where to look… so much prettiness… ‘you’re pure beauty Mother Nature’ I whisper… I breathe it in slowly… a crisp breeze brushes my cheeks… reminding me this is not a dream… it’s just a perfect autumn morning… at Harvest Moon Hill.

May pure beauty find you today x

life on the farm








Heya! How are you? What have you been up to? We’ve been finding our feet and a new routine on the farm after heading back to work, so are now juggling work and the commute into our daily lives again. Each day is a thrill to pull up into the driveway after a long stretch of driving, we sigh and exhale then take a deep breath in of the fresh country air and it fills our lungs and hearts. I find something instantly calming about looking out over grassy hills dotted with wandering cows and sheep.

The return to routine has also heralded the return of my crafty mojo… I actually wondered if it’d permanently vanished but I now realise that I just didn’t have the capacity or energy or motivation, physically or mentally, to invest into crafting when I was preparing for the move. I don’t think I realised just how much of a toll it took. Gosh I found moving house a big deal! I can’t show you any pictures of my latest crafty project as it’s a present for someone who reads this blog (hiya sis!), but rest assured I’ll bombard you with crafty photos again soon.

The other morning I was woken by a strange – not normal sounding – mooing from a cow, only to check out the window and be greeted by a huge kangaroo bouncing in our back yard! And by back yard I mean our little house paddock… he was so close! I think Mr Cow was unimpressed with Mr Roo eating all the green grass and making himself at home! The timing was perfect though, the sun rise was beginning to throw a lovely soft peachy pink glow over the horizon. I wandered outside to hear the birds come life, there were no other sounds but for the gentle breeze through the cypress trees. I mentally pinched myself. Again. A regular thing since we’ve moved in. It still feels incredibly surreal that we live here now, smack bang in the middle of our dream. Granted the full scale of the dream has not blossomed yet, but we are here, we’ve made a solid move into the dream and that feels pretty cool.

The wedge tailed Eagles are regular visitors up the valley, we’ve watched the full moon rise over our home and loved seeing hills become tinged with lime green after a little rain. We’re looking forward to watching the seasons roll by imparting their special qualities on the land. Autumn is my favourite and when we visited the local little community schoolhouse at dusk I was reminded why. The colour on the leaves as the sunlight sparkled through them was beautiful. Such a sweet little old schoolhouse it is too. If I’ve got the story right, apparently a long long time ago the community decided they wanted a school for their kids so a local land owner donated a portion of his land and it was built. Unfortunately the original schoolhouse was burnt down but the community rallied together and rebuilt it with donations, so now it’s totally owned by the community. Sweet hey? It hasn’t been a school since the 1960’s I think but seems to be regularly used by the community which is pretty lovely really. On the way back from the schoolhouse I photographed our house from a distant road as the last of the light was dusting the top of our surrounding hills. Our little home perched on the hill glistening yet subtly blending in to its surrounds. More mental pinching goes on.

I’ve also decided to look at the commute to work as a positive thing. There’s nothing we can do about the situation for the moment so best to embrace it I reckon. We now have 3-4 hours a day sitting down where we can’t do anything else but drive… and listen. I’m choosing to fill my head with the good stuff and have been working my way through a podcast series. Of course I listen to lots of other ones too but this is by far my favourite and so worth a listen if you get a chance. It’s called ‘the one you feed’ and it’s based on the premise of a parable ‘The tale of two wolves’ which goes like this:

A grandfather is talking with his grandson and he says there are two wolves inside of us which are always at war with each other. One of them is a good wolf which represents things like kindness, bravery and love. The other is a bad wolf, which represents things like greed, hatred and fear.
The Grandson stops and thinks about it for a second and then he looks up at his grandfather and says ‘Grandfather, which one wins?’ … the Grandfather quietly replies, ‘the one you feed’.

The series covers a huge range of topics and has a really varied mix of guests from Monks, to Rockstars, to Doctors, to Authors… But the theme running through all of the podcasts is about what these people do to feed their ‘good wolf’ and keep heading in the right direction in life. It’s totally fascinating, interesting, knowledgeable, sad, mood lifting, realistic, enlightening, funny, and entertaining and I would recommend it in a heartbeat! It certainly makes the long commute pleasurable and actually beneficial to my mental health. Win win right? If you want to have a listen to one but have no idea where to start (there is over 100 after all!) may I suggest this one, this one, this one, this one, this one, or this one. Let me know what you think if you do ok?

Hope life is treating you sweet and your ears and hearts are filled with life enriching things! X

harvest moon hill












The big move to the country has happened and we’ve landed safely here at our little farm, Harvest Moon Hill. Named so from our deep love of music, our intentions of harvesting food from here, our respect for the moon and her cycles, and the hills in which this place sits, amongst the Strzelecki ranges in South Gippsland, Victoria, Australia.

We’ve unpacked all the boxes, I’ve made plumberry jam from strawberries and plums from the local market, I’ve made my favourite Roast Chicken Soup, I’ve hung up all my treasures on the walls, I’ve arranged and rearranged my craft room, we’ve walked the boundary of our new property and even strolled over our neighbours hills (with their blessing of course). We’ve been welcomed by neighbours with visits and bags of homegrown tomatoes and even been invited to the local community group casserole night! As I type this I can see Charlie out the back bevelling leather for a new belt. Every day we do something else that grounds us a bit more and helps it feel more like our home.

Our little 2.5 acre farm is a blank canvas just waiting for our plans. Surrounding us are big 100 and 400 acre farms running sheep and cattle. There are hills for miles and an abundance of bird life everywhere. Lots of cows mooing, baby calves with the wind up their tails running about jumping and bucking like little mischievous kiddies. Timid little sheep bolting off at the first sight of you walking towards them. And Eagles! Wedge-Tailed Eagles… 3 of them! Flying majestically in the sky, then swooping down low in the valley, no doubt looking for dinner. We even saw a couple of brazen black crows squawking at the tail of one huge eagle. Am sure the eagle could have had either crow for lunch but he just flew off gracefully, his huge maybe 1 metre wing span gently flapping. We’ve spotted this Eagle trio a few times now and it’s thrill every time. I just love the Willie Wagtails too, and can’t help but smile each time I see one land on a post wagging his little tail. The Pee Wee’s are fast becoming my favourite as they like to visit the back verandah and eat the spiders! Yay for Pee Wees! And the sound of Kookaburra’s are reassuring as they kill snakes and we are told we have a resident brown snake up near the shed. Of course the magpies sing their beautiful songs and the swallows and starlings are everywhere.

In the morning the silence feels surreal. You can’t hear anything except a moo or chirp or maybe the wind blow through the trees. It’s so peaceful and everything I could have dreamed of (apart from the snakes and spiders obviously!). Talk about feeling lucky, blessed, grateful, a bit scared (snakes & spiders), a little overwhelmed by all we need to learn about farming, but mostly so very happy. Ahhh… all the feels…. life is sweet!

Hope life is peaceful for you and the sweet bits are bigger than the scary bits! x

on the cusp of change…


Is where I’ve been lately… Sifting through nearly 20 years of memories in our beloved Dove Cottage… finding first birthday cards and first pairs of shoes… holding pretty much everything I own for at least a moment and assessing if it’s something I should pack, gift, donate or tip… that takes some serious time and emotional energy for a sentimental clutterbug like myself… trying to keep in mind some wise words I read about the purpose of precious keepsakes like old letters… constantly reminding myself stuff is just stuff… even if some stuff sparks memories long forgotten… packing, packing, packing and packing… all the while during moving mode life pushes on… work is worked… chores are done… birthdays are celebrated… gigs are enjoyed… and minds have been blown – hello Gillian Welch & Dave Rawlings!

I know so much about my everyday life is going to change, and whilst we’ve been counting down the sleeps til we move like a 6 year old does a visit from Santa, we’ve also been soaking up the goodness of where we are… morning coffees in the window are that little bit longer and sweeter as we wonder what we’ll ever do without a window seat… every flower that blooms in the garden is a little more meaningful as I recall when I purchased it, planted it, watered it and pruned it… Really appreciating the significance of saying ‘I’ll pop over in 5 minutes’ as I mentally prepare to change that line to ‘an hour and half’ or so.

Sitting on the cusp of change is a weird place to hang, you know it’s only temporary so you can’t really get comfy… there’s sadness in letting go of the old yet excitement in leaping into the new… it’s a bit like doing the limbo in no mans land … and I’m trying to hold my shit together and not get sick from pushing so hard… and packing, packing and packing some more… and trying to embrace one of my favourite Dalai Lama quotes ‘Change is the only constant in life’.

Some things will stay the same of course… I’ll still be me… but I’ll be me in this new phase of my life, no longer in the Dove Cottage era… it’ll be the farm era… the time we followed our hearts and just went for it with some research and knowledge about what farm life might be like, but mostly with a dream bigger than the sky, a bunch of blind faith and a basket full of hope.

May the changes in your life be smooth and sprinkled with sweet things x

field and flourish


















Back in November I got to enjoy my August birthday… a gift to attend the fabulous Field and Flourish workshop run by Tamsin from Tamsin’s Table and Mel from Cecilia Fox. I adore Mel’s flower arrangements and I’ve long been a fan of Tamsin’s Instagram feed, her images feel like they’ve been plucked from my dreams – rolling green hills, beautiful farmhouse, lots of fresh homegrown produce, and so many pretty flowers and table settings not to mention delicious food… just gorgeous. Funnily enough I didn’t seem to capture any food shots, I guess I was too busy eating it, all of which was homegrown and homemade, sprinkled with pretty flowers and love.

The day began with a wander through the Rose paddock…. yes paddock! Tamsin planted a whole paddock full of Roses, not just any Roses either but a carefully curated collection of Roses that not only travels through history as you travel down the hill, but blows your socks off with perfume and petals and colour. Then it was time to wander through the veggie garden, collecting all sorts of lovely foliage and veg that was purposely left to go to seed. Did you know Leek seed heads make for a stunning addition to an arrangement? They do! Most of us ventured beyond the veggie garden to collect some grass seed heads and other goodies and of course to check out the free range Turkeys and their babies. Who knew baby Turkeys were so cute?

We prepared our flowers and dethorned our roses under the cool shade of the magnificent old Ash Tree that graces the garden surrounding Tamsin’s farmhouse, listening to the lovely stories Mel shared about all sorts of things including becoming a florist in New Zealand. All the while Tamsin and her friendly team were busy preparing our lunch, the smells wafting out of the kitchen were amazing. Back inside and under the gentle guidance of Mel each student made a posy and a large arrangement, whilst delicious snacks were served and we sipped rose syrup spritzes. Freshly dug heirloom radishes, with a generous slathering of butter and a sprinkling of salt and deep-fried onion anyone? Oh my that was a taste sensation that had to be eaten to be believed. Divine!

Before we knew it first course was served and my taste buds were in heaven again. Tamsin kindly accommodated all my tricky food allergies and blew me away with a flavoursome 3 course lunch. Everything looked pretty as picture and almost too good to eat. Blue potatoes with pretty little blue flowers scattered throughout the fresh greens may give you an idea of the kind of pretty I’m talking about. But it couldn’t convey the deliciousness. Nor could my description of a quince syrup sorbet with sweet tangy poached Rhubarb (so fresh I saw it being carried from the veggie garden whilst we were eating first course!) and sprinkled with the tiniest but most divinely flavoured fresh rose geranium petals. I guess you’ll just have to trust me when I say the food was as pretty as it was delicious and fresh. We ate our fill and chatted around the beautiful big table, surrounded by gorgeous old windows with views to die for.

What a lovely day it was. Mel’s stories and helpful advice with the flowers and arranging, and Tamsin’s welcoming hosting and delicious food made for the most perfect combination. I learnt about arrangements having ‘ins and outs’ and giving each bloom room to breathe. I learned that the right variety of zucchini will make the most amazing noodles you’ve ever tasted and you can grow a huge amount of produce in a relatively humble plot… and of course so much more than I could eloquently share with you here… If this dreamy day sounds like your kind of cuppa tea, then you’ll be pleased to know Tamsin and Mel run this workshop every year, but they always sell out within days of being announced so you’ll need to be quick if you want to book into this gem of day.

Wishing you dreamy days flourished with delicious prettiness x