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Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Autumn catch-ups

At last the weather is turning towards coolness.   Things are going on as normal around here, though I am just getting over a crappy cold of snotness.

The chookies are having a nice life as usual. Guinevere went broody again, and since none of her fertile eggs survived the heat while she was sitting, I bought her four day olds. Three Silver-spangled Hamburgs and one white Cochin, which were what the local stockfeeder had hatching that day. I like Cochins, but I think Hamburgs might be a bit flighty for me, so we'll see how they go.

At any rate Guinevere is happy, though she only has three now because one chick died two days after arriving. It was a very hot day. I gave them an ice bottle but Guinevere isn't the smartest chook and she didn't take them over to it.  She's a sweet mama, though.




Morgana and her singleton child Mordred are still hanging out together.  Luckily she hasn't gone back to broody again!  Mordred is quite pretty, a cross of Silver-laced Wyandotte and black Australorp, and a hen thank goodness!       



 

As usual, the dogs and cat are hard at work.


You can see these two are related!  :D 


I've been playing lyre and guitar pretty much every day (till I got sick).  I'm getting a few songs up to scratch ready to join in Bardic circles when we go over to South Australia for Damh the Bard and Cerri's concerts and camp. Weeeee!

We bought a caravan and have been getting it set up to drive across the Nullabor. We've never done it, and it seems like something every Aussie should do once, so we're going to do it.  It's a Jayco penguin camper.  I really like Jaycos and it is the thing we looked at that didn't smell of outgassing plastics.
   
The biggest hassle has been trying to remove all the left over perfumes in it.  We've had to buy new foam to put in the mattress and kitchen seats because the one that was in them had some hideous chemical in it to keep it fresh.  Bleagh.  What a toxic world we are creating. The new foam is European standard and has no chemical outgassing or perfumes in it.  Thank goodness!  This chemical sensitivity drives me nuts.

Not that i had far to go to get there, as the next photo shows.



That's me embroidering my design on my ceremonial tabard.  Jarrah leaves and blossom one side, oak leaves and acorns the other, and the Awen in the middle with the colours of blue for Bard, Goldy-brown for Druid and Green for Ovate.  i love it now it's done but I will not be taking up embroidery for a hobby!  Head torch, 2.5 times glasses, and still I tired my eyeballs out.


Kitty liked to help me. Help me not embroider!  
               

Other current projects include a t-shirt design for the Druids of WA group.  We put out the call for anyone in the group to design a shirt, and i figure someone else will make a more serious one, so I let myself be as twee as i wanted, and this is the result.  Now being watercoloured.


Black swan,  black cockatoo, blue wren, and a non-gendered druid.   :)

We had a fun games night here not long before I got the snots. This pic came just before Thor crashed the Jenga pile.  We'd already played three games of Forbidden Desert by then and died every time. Apparently the five player version is very hard to win, so we didn't feel too bad.


I'll leave you with these pics of a creepy place I found when walking a local reserve I'd found in the street directory.  Turned out it was a whole big old granite quarry area, now abandoned, and it was one of those really weird moments to come upon it all out there when I'd expected just ordinary bush.


It had very odd energy and i found myself Druidly blessing the torn up land, and blessing the restless spirits of those who had laboured here, perhaps the convicts who built the railway lines in the area.    

This was the deep and black lagoon I came across.  A hole cut while chasing the dark granite into the ground, and now full of black water even so late in a dry summer.  It reminded me of nothing so much as the pool at the gates of Moria.  Brrr!   Didn't even dip a toe!   

 
  

Monday, 4 March 2019

Summer means fires

Well, you hope not but it does.  Some recent firey pics.








Andy, I can't thank you enough for making this gif of me looking great after nearly 6 hours at a fire  :D

   


Andy takes great pics!



That's me on the right, looking all cool and bushrangery under my smoke mask. We weren't posing, but it couldn't have been better if we had been!

Lots of stuff going on, as usual not finding time to blog it.  I still can't comment on other blogs any more, so if i used to read your blog and comment, be assured I still do read them, and it is frustrating the hell out of me!     


Sunday, 6 January 2019

Love

I'm not sure I deserve the love of this very large and devotedly snuggly cat.


Being the special person of a special animal is a privilege, but also a heavy burden at times.

Especially when the special animal is also bloody heavy!  (And even more especially when the weather is hot and you are having hot flashes!)

Tuesday, 1 January 2019

The Survivor Chicken.

This is Spotty.  This time last year she was raising a clutch of Wyandotte chicks for me.

      
She is the only one of my three red chooks who survived a recent fox attack.  The fox got away with nothing, because it broke the necks of my other two red girls, then tried to drag Spotty away, but my dogs scared it off. (Go Rosie and Tuppy!)

It's one of those events that a chicken owner hopes they never experience.  It was my own fault. I'd dragged a slab out from under the gate in my recent renovations and hadn't put it back, and mr or mrs fox dug under the gate.

I had to put down the two hens, my dear tamest Rover, and Fido the talker. In my nightshirt and bare feet within minutes in Fido's case, but in the morning for poor Rover, who I'd thought the fox had taken and only found the next morning, hiding under a piece of tin.

I'm so sorry, Rover, but at least you had a lovely life!  
A lot of chicken owners hate foxes, but I never have. They are doing what they need to do, and it is up to me to make it so that they can't do it here.  After this event, we now have electric fencing to top up our defences.   Cheap hobby?  Ha!

Anyway, it could have been much worse if it wasn't for the dogs, and because both my Wyandotte hens (Spotty's babies from last year) were safely tucked away in their own broody hutches elsewhere.

Guinevere was safely with her one baby, an obvious rooster right from hatching, who is called Frankendotte, or Frank, because his mama was a red hen and his daddy was Elvis the rooster (who was being an ass and is now in a better place).  Frank is actually growing up to be quite pretty in a bit of a muddled way.


Since his daddy grew up to be a dickhead, maybe Frank will too, and in that case he will be off to rooster heaven as well, to a place where all the hens sit down even if you don't bother to dance for them or be nice to them (or to your owner's mother).

Morgana was safely sitting on eggs on the night of the fox, and she too only managed to hatch one chick. The word is that the weather has been too weird this spring.  Her chick looks like a girl (praise be!) and I think is from the single, solitary egg laid by by my old, old, Black Australorp, Nanny Ogg, this whole year.  She is black, with a tiny tipping of white on the wing feathers, but at only two weeks you can't tell yet.  Morgana and her baby stayed safely in a borrowed rabbit hutch until this week, and are now in my new broody hen pen.  Can you call a girl chicken Mordred?  If so, that is her name, or maybe even if you can't.  Has to be, really.

Give me a mealworm but don't you come near my baby!
Old Nanny was right in the back corner and survived, as did bloody Elvis. What happened to putting his life on the line for his girls? 

My other survivors were that trio of ratbags, known as Blue, Powder and Puff, the Sussexes.  Blue is supposed to be a hen but is blatantly not at this point.

I ain't no girl!
The two coronation girls are a delight, so silly and soft.  I'm very glad they were safely in the broody pen at the time.


 So, Spotty was saved by the dogs, left behind by the fox, dazed and bleeding, when she wouldn't fit under the gate. She was injured on the face and neck and I thought she might not make it, but a little rest and care saw her begin to perk up.   Now she is back to true ferocious red chook form, and the other day she went weird on me and did this quite a few times in a row. 

   
I think it was because I moved Morgana and Mordred to the new pen, but who knows with chickens, for the ways of chickens are strange!

In other news... wait, is there anything to life but chickens?  Surely not! 

Not really, it only seems that way some days. All is lovely in the world of the merry bard.  Good friends and laughter, making music, work of the hands and mind, my Druidry to keep me grounded and floating at the same time, and some long-dreamed-of events coming up to enjoy in 2019.  Weeeee!

What do you think?  Fashion for 2019?
I hope you have lovely year, with no literal OR metaphorical fox attacks upon your life.   May 2019 bring you all that is for your greatest good and happiness, whatever that may be.   Blessed be!   
             

Thursday, 13 December 2018

Me bad!


How do you go from blogging twice a week to blogging never in a few short months?  I dunno.  I am still saving photos, but not blogging.   I know I'm going to regret it down the track because I forget stuff and this blog makes me remember it, and take photos of life too.  I like that about blogging.

Ah well, we'll see. Maybe my holiday has done me good. In the meantime, here's the pics I've been collecting...
Druidy meditations with the help of a kitty.  It is not conducive to concentration when a cat comes and sits on you and peers under your hood to make sure it is you before settling in to purr.  

Pretty Cyrano. 

Me blacking out at a burn.  Those Xanthorrea really go up, but soon they sprout new greenery and away they go again. 

Photo taken by local paper to add a local element to an article about a show on cable tv called Bushfire Wars.  Our shire and brigade were part of episode 2.  We were actually blacking out a fire when they came to take the pic, so we were authentically grubby.  Yes that's me dead centre.  Only lady on the fireground at the time!  

At a training day, slacking off in the back of the truck. 

Blacking out at a hazard reduciton burn with our wonderful new brigade.

Andrew crew leading on our first fire call of the summer. 

Andrew trying to find the Oxfam trailwalker trail as a crew safety support officer.

My three new Sussex bandits, Blue the Light Sussex, Powder and Puff the Coronation Sussex.  

My way cool new chook shed built almost totally by me!  


Mama guinevere and her singleton chick, a rooster of course. 

That is one scary fierce mama gaze!



Art, of the back yard.  

What i found next to my ear on the back of the shed door when i peered in looking for something one day.  

Jarrah blossom on a tree I planted some years ago. 

The sun setting high above perth at the oxfam trailwalk. 

Neighbours' bonfire, with high winds, in dry spring conditions.   Yep, horizontal flames are ok aren't they? (Answer: NO!) 


Pretty sunset over perth. 

Tuppy in the cone of shame after having a cyst removed from her eyelid.  It looks great now!

More drawing practice.

Gorgeous wildflowers on Perth scarp.

May you all have a lovely Christmas season, no matter what you call it, and to my Druid friends, I wish a very merry and fruitful Alban Hefin! 

Here's your gift from me, a new story.  It is not Christmassy at all, and yet somehow it is.  I hope you enjoy it!  It's called Mistress Munchkin & the Plutonium Dragon.