Thursday, December 12, 2013


Just to let you all know that we are still alive and kicking. A little tired, yes, at least on my part, but still here and well.

I wasn't intending to neglect this space for so long. But you know how life happens, and certain things just get put on the back burner.

So what's been happening in the meanwhile? Swimming lessons, soccer, sewing lessons, calf feeding, cow milking, two birthdays (Luca's 11th and Violet's 3rd), a gun license safety course, breastfeeding finished as well as bed sharing done with (yes I still can't quite believe those last 3 things). Plus all the other thousand and one things that you can probably relate to. You know how crazy it gets at this time of year right? All those things that throw you out of your normal routine?

I'm afraid I'm so terribly disorganized this year that christmas is going to be a last minute affair. I haven't done christmas shopping, I haven't sent cards out yet and I haven't even put in my christmas ham and pork order. I know, what is the world coming to? But I am optimistically hoping that it will all fall into place with minimum effort (perhaps a little too optimistic!) Please tell me I am not the only one!

While we see the end of daily swimming lessons today, and school finishes up next week, not to mention the extra hours Daniel has been working to wrap up his business for the end of the year, we are hoping that things will go down a notch in the next week or so.

Afterall, it can be easy to get caught up in the whole "getting everything done just right" before christmas, but what really matters is relaxed time together, some good, not necessarily complicated food and a few simple presents. I've let go of the online shopping for christmas this year and I will be shopping locally for presents. In the past I have thought it was the right thing to buy online from ethical companies, and I still believe this can be a good thing. But I have seen local small businesses struggle in our small town, with many closing, and while they may have the general Made in China products for the main part, it somehow feels right this year to be supporting the local shops.

Our christmas tree only went up this week, and although this is usually my domain, and I am sadly a little controlling about how the tree should look, I let Julia take the reigns this year. So yes, our plastic white (that is beginning to yellow) tree is decorated to the hilt this year, complete with tinsel and every decoration that we own, but I'm loving it in all it's tacky glory.

I had grand plans to knit dishcloths for teacher's gifts and gift fillers this year, but the cotton is still sitting there and I don't think I'm going to get that done this year. But you never know. Otherwise I guess it's not too late for a few biscuit batches?

In the world of craft I actually managed to finish a few things of late. Okay, only one actually finished. I have almost finished Luca's cardigan, bar the zipper, so let's hope it still fits come next season. I think it will. I will hopefully get to Ravel it soon enough. The other completed project is another Wiksten tank (the last one I made is blogged here, and I wear it to death), made up with some op shop cotton voile. I love this pattern. It is fairly quick and easy and such a great cut. I added the pocket this time. Certainly quite forgiving on muffin tops.

All three of our bovines are doing well. Bessie's steer calf is perhaps doing a little too well, and at 4 months now we are contemplating weaning him over the holidays. We're getting a little greedy for some more milk, especially since Shirley enjoys her little share every day, mixed with her milk replacer. Speaking of Shirley, she is doing quite well, and at almost 7 weeks now, has settled into our house and our hearts. Who knew cows could be so cuddly? She is still in her straw covered watertank/firewood pen, and she is being taught to lead and be tethered on the grass.

So that's about it. I promise I will try to get to this blog a little more often as I do miss it when I'm away too long.  I hope you are all well and coping with this considerably more busy time of year. If there is one lesson that I am learning myself of christmas this year, it is to let go of unrealistic expectations. Do what you can with what you have (I read that saying recently somewhere, but I can't remember where?) Christmas will still happen.


Bungalowgirl said...

I was just thinking about you today on the drove home from kindy drop off and wondering how you and your cows were going. To make you feel better, total chaos reigns at our place with all the end of year hooha plus a 5th birthday party just gone. The tree is not up, no cards have been written by me ( the kids did do all the ones for their school friends last night) and no christmas shopping ticked off yet. Time for some deep breaths and long lists. Come boxing day we will all be lolling around relaxed and full, we just have to get through as best we can until then. mel x

Harry Flashman said...

Your Christmas Tree is beautiful indeed.

I don't celebrate Christmas anymore now that the kids are gone. My wife is going up to stay with them over Christmas and I will stay here to take care of the animals and our place. But it was a big family thing when they were little.

Zara said...

Julia did a beautiful job with the tree decorating. I do like your Christmas d├ęcor dotted around your home.
Glad to hear the cattle are doing well.
How is the chook shed construction coming along?

simplelife said...

So glad to hear that all is well in your space. It's a crazy, hectic time of the year no matter how hard I try to resist and slow it down.
Your tree looks great.

Merry Christmas

LaurenBurke BenHissink said...

Oh I'm glad everything is ok!! Have missed your posts but totally understand.. life is crazy!!
Best festive wishes you to you!

A little bit country said...

I've missed your posts. It is a crazy time of year. Merry Christmas xoxo

Brenda @ 13 Acres said...

wow you have been busy! looking a lovely and having your own cow and calf must be wonderful! I love your white tree in all its children decorated tacky-ness! We haven't even put our tree up yet! I agree…so much going on at this time…wishing you a few days of quiet and rest! xx

Maa said...

Tania, Hope you and the family have a wonderful Christmas. Enjoy your busy days ... too soon the kids are gone and they're the ones that make it so joyful. Sue

Evi said...

So nice to hear that everything is still running along smoothly at your place!! I've just returned from an unexpected bloggy break and wondered if you were having the same!
Your white Christmas tree looks fantastic considering I've never thought they looked 'right'! I'm a bit of a control freak when it comes to decorating the tree too but have finally learnt to loosen up and of course I enjoy it just as much when it's a bit lopsided anyway!!
And don't worry, I'm sure there are many of us late organisers around..... my list goes like this - make biscuits, make spiced nuts, make marinated olives all for gifting; plant out the poly tunnel; purchase last minute gifts; clean house; weed garden; decorate tree; write Christmas letter; and so on! No, you are not the only one!!

Lisa said...

Wow your life sounds like my life here in New York minus the cows-we dont have cows just 2 dogs and 4 kids. Busy here too shopping decorating and baking. I guess its the same no matter where you live. I love the saying Christmas will still happen. I think I will use that line the rest of the month.

Linda said...

Love the white tree! Merry, merry Holidays! Linda@Wetcreek Blog

BLD in MT said...

What a splendid recap! So glad all is well and busy for you and yours. Best of luck with juggling it all--Christmas will be wonderful, no matter what.

Kim Houssenloge said...

Oh hello there! SO lovely to hear your voice again and read here on your gorgy blog. Good on you for allowing the Christmas tree decorating to be taken over by Julia. I'm a control freak when it comes to decorating for Christmas and maybe why Lew's never been interested in the decorating part:( Your calfy looks so cute. I'm thinking everyone is in a similarboat this eyar re: being not ready for Christmas. I haven't bought a single thing yet and the tree only went up this past week. I've made one batch of shortbread and that's it so far. Hopefully I'll get my act together very soon. Enjoy being relaxed and carefree this Christmas:)And if you get to it, you get to it;) x

Zena said...

Your tree is beautiful and festive and I like how it looks snow covered. Sounds like the cows are working out and are producing not only nutritious milk but much joy and happiness. Merry Christmas to you all!

Christine said...

You are not the only one! Sadly lacking in any Christmas preparations here, too. It has been up to my daughters to assemble tree and adorn, make advent calender (envelopes stuck on wall!), and any other festive actions. Hoping to get to the gift organising this week. Nice to catch up on your news and visit your space again. :)

Fiona said...

Lovely to hear your latest news. Life is always so busy in Nov-Dec, isn't it? Love your Christmas ornaments and your decision to shop locally. Hope you can enjoy the final days before Christmas.

Linda said...

It will all fall I to place, I,m sure! I'm having trouble with gift buying this year because now that I'm homeschooling my kids are always with me. I love that your milking has been so successful. It sounds like you're ver comfortable with it. And your gun safety course? I did one but then chickened out and never applied for the lisence! What will you be using a gun for?

Ange said...

I'm with much to do, such little time..and we still need to get to Sydney to share Christmas with my family. But, Christmas will always does and those incomplete projects will wait for next year! Perhaps...mmmmm

litttlegreenvillage said...

The jacket which you are knitting looks lovely. I am knitting some alpaca socks at the moment. I find it very calming to knit during the Christmas season for some reason.
Wishing you and your family a very happy Christmas.
From Heather

Harry Flashman said...

Christmas Eve here. I wanted to wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.