Time is swift. If I could grasp its tail I would. How amazing to think that He holds our years in his hands like a drop in the ocean. Often puts things into perspective.
Early september, sees us Celebrating Father’s Day. My husband is a good man. and I’m learning to appreciate the small (yet, big) things he does for us. He is also a good Father, walking the halls with a baby at 2am. Rough and tumble games with a child after work. reading books, fun dances and his ability to fix things. It’s not always easy, some days he is downright weary. But he continues to serve us, in the capacities God gave him and we are blessed to have him in our lives.
We have been loving the slow mornings, the weekend sleep ins and morning snuggles and getting to know our darling little guy. He has fit right in to our little mini-clan. We have had some ups and downs- crazy child meltdowns, sleep deprived mama yells (oh the guilt!), Mama forgetting silly stuff that makes us laugh, rogue breastfeeding in parks etc, first smiles, and lots of beautiful snuggles. It has been challenging, but wonderful, despairing but hopeful.
We continue to learn more about our selves, our God and our own need for infinite Grace.
Despite being due in June, Our darling Son, Little Babe, arrived in July. A surprising 11 days after his due date. Considering his daddy is always on time, I’m guessing this little guy takes after Mama. We were so proud to welcome a son, despite Dancing girl’s disappointment over baby not being a sister. I pray they will be great friends, and a rambunctious-climbing-getting messy-funny-games-kind of brother is just what she needs. Someone who will build with her, and create mud pies and dress up as super heroes. Maybe I’m just idealistic, but I am glad to finally have a sibling for my sweet girl and adjust to being a family of four.
We are trying to deal with the sleepless nights. Though this time around things are much easier, and our boy is a good sleeper and good feeder. being older parents isn’t always easy. what we lack in energy we make up for in life experience- though I’m not sure which I’d rather. 20 years ago I would have had more energy and I have often wished I had done this earlier. But I am reminded that for everything there is a season, and this is ours. The timing of our season, is perfect and we don’t always know the why’s or the wherefore’s, or what is around the corner. But, I have faith that what is to come is bigger than the bleary eyes, the days full of laundry and baby burping, the hard moments juggling another child and grieving over the time we used to share. There is one greater than all of it. And I live in Hope.
Our Wintry June has been a mix of beautiful mild sunny days and rainy stormy days. Our garden got some love in the early part of the month when the sun was still shining and we have weeded many beds, set up our new potato tower and relocated soil, relocated raised beds and fed lots of worms. 🙂 The orchard has 3 trees growing well and some berry bushes and ground covers filling up our tiered areas. We hope to add more as we source more plants- some of our fruit trees have been given to us, and others have been shop-bought.
There have been so many outdoor learning opportunities, and I love what June brings. Everything from getting muddy, ‘fishing’ in a muddy, waterlogged garden bed, jumping in puddles, admiring ‘raindrop jewels’ on our bushes, and searching for rainbows.
We have also had a lot of together time, indoors and I have been enjoying being on Maternity leave from work and being with Dancing Girl every day. We do lots of lego building, play board games, read books, do dress ups and Dancing Girl helps with chores and cooking in the kitchen.
Some of the highlights of June are:
The ‘messy play’ day at Playgroup- Dancing Girl loved the finger painting and the tub of jelly to ‘fish’ in.
2. I have some short precious time during the day to catch up on Crochet, drink a warm cup of tea and ‘Mama care’ before baby arrives and it is taken up with newborn duties.
3. Indoor mornings spent playing with lego, board games or just hanging out as a family.
I have to mention the new Bus Stop board game we purchased. It’s produced by Orchard Toys and features in the first of these pictures. It is a fabulous game that involves picking up and setting down passengers. It teaches addition and subtraction in a fun and easy way with opportunities to extend learning and making more complicated maths sentences. I am really enjoying it, and Maths makes me shudder. haha
June also signifies the last of our waiting for Baby. Our due date has come and we wait expectantly for an exciting few days in early July.
But I loved harvesting our little crop of carrots and a few new potatoes that randomly popped up. We have worked hard at some of our raised beds and these guys loved our old sandpit shells that we turned into raised beds. Our bok choy and radishes also loved it- I think it may have been the sunshine. 🙂
Needless to say, the carrots did not last long, between barbecued maple carrots, raw munched carrots, soups and curries we loved having so many home grown carroty friends.
We have also been working on writing with Dancing Girl. I think she’s doing a great job. She loves to copy the words we have written down and is slowly learning how to spell three letter words.
It appears April is a month we are most productive. The temps are lowering, though the days still sunny and the evenings are cooling down into lovely snuggly weather. We love the anticipation of Easter and the blessings it brings.
During our April Holidays we created a sound wall next to Dancing Girl’s Cubby. I have always loved sound walls and it is a great way to recycle broken bits and pieces from the kitchen that make great bangs, scrapes, tingles or thuds. Colanders or strainers are particularly fun to scrape.
My first attempt at a sound wall didn’t work very well and I really love that this one did. Lots of fun (and loudness- Sorry neighbours!) already.
We also got our first Olive Harvest. Qorvus is so excited and already researching brining methods. We hope it works, as we are a big olive eating household! Last year we attempted to make olive oil, we got about a table spoon and while that was great, it kind of felt like a waste of so many olives. Nevertheless this year’s tree is burdened with them. Delicious!
Easter brought so many blessings, the chance to have lovely conversations with our daughter about finding Jesus and telling her the easter story. While they aren’t particularly sustainable, I love to fill plastic eggs with treats or craft items and this year we used Resurrection Eggs, which was a lovely tactile way of talking about the Easter Story. If you have never encountered Resurrection Eggs, check out your local Christian Book store or eBay. I loved having something practical and Tactile to work with.
I fondly call March, my birthday Month. Aren’t all the best people born in March? 😉 This year was the big 40 and we enjoyed a lovely family gathering at a cafe in the swan valley.
This month we have also been busy learning and gardening. So much fun to harvest our own cough medicine and simmer it on the stove. I was so excited to find my Elderflower bush had actually grown berries and was literally watching them like a hawk to stop them being shared by the birds. I’m probably not very good at Hawk-like impressions but at least I managed to keep most of the berries. 🙂
We also used olive leaves, elderflowers, chamomile flowers, calendula flowers and ginger, cinnamon and honey. It made a lovely reddish syrup, ready for winter colds and flus. Hopefully next year we will have more berries, as I’d love a thick dark syrup. But considering how young my bush is I was stoked just to have some. 🙂
One thing we have also enjoyed is nature finds. Dancing Girl and I had some lovely moments collecting coloured leaves in our front yard. As we are now in Autumn it was exciting to see so many different colours and then talk about the seasons and what happens to trees during the year.
Summer in Perth. Not always a month we look forward to. Heat. Dryness. Just generally heat. All. the. time. We are thankful that this year we have been blessed with a mild Summer so far. And that we can be productive in our garden during the Christmas and new year holidays.
One of things we DO look forward to is our berries. Luscious, juicy, blue berries. Our bush went nuts this year. I’m not complaining. I’m inventing excuses to eat them. haha “Let me just go get some berries off the bush…”
Nothing better that fresh berries off the bush. We have been inspired to create a berry patch, perhaps at the bottom of the fruit trees in our orchard. It merits thoughts and research. And salivating.
We also officially planted our first little orchard tree (we have others that are bigger, but this was our first mini tree). A mandarin. Dancing Girl loves them, so it was a logical choice. Our local area used to be home to citrus and there were once many citrus orchards. We are hoping it grows strong and we reap the yummy fruits on our labours.
Don’t you love these lazy summer Saturdays?! I’m still in my Pyjamas. Maybe I shouldn’t confess that. I have, however, been quite productive- Making Gluten free banana bread (it was delicious smothered with some organic butter), cleaning out drawers and culling clutter, and put on a load of laundry. It’s a hot one today, so we are hibernating inside, Dancing Girl has been entertaining us with crazy dances, and playing with the toys we just put away.
Thanks for Joining us on our gardening and family adventures. We are an ordinary family, attempting the extraordinary- that is, growing an orchard and a whole bunch of other things in between.
Enjoy your weekend- wherever you are stay cool- Stay warm, and Stay Classy.
Here’s some links to Banana bread recipes that I love.