Monday, 14 September 2009

The Madness Continues

It's been a very busy couple of weeks around the place! Between work and play-work there hasn't been a lot of time for much else, but over the weekend I managed to take a few pictures so that you can see what we've been up to, as well as reading the usual verbiage...

The toilet roll seedlings

We did make it out camping, and a great weekend it was. Started out a little windy, but shortly after erecting a screen of tarps to reduce the worst of it it all died down. The night was incredibly cold, and we woke to a thick frost and a case of the shivers which took a while by the fire to subside (I'm sure it wasn't totally due to the wine consumed the night before, the frost must have been partly to blame!) In addition to a long and leisurely walk to the creek we did a bit of digging in the crystal mines and found a few nice specimens, though nothing truly remarkable.

Before leaving we also marked out the new spot for the shed so that the neighbour will be able to pop over whenever he has the time and inclination and level the site for us. The location isn't quite as good as the last with regard to preserving the views, but it shouldn't do too much harm. At the very least it will divide it up into "garden rooms" with framed views lol!

Chooks on patrol

This Saturday just gone I took off out there again, though it was a slow start and I didn't make it out there until 11am. A good part of the early morning was spent welding two pipes into one longer one that was going to be the final stay for the eastern fence of the orchard. I'll admit now that I need a lot of catchup practice on the welding...

The stay went in swiftly upon arrival, so I dove into putting that fence up, being the longest and most daunting. It's only 50m long, but still daunting, so I hate to think what some of the longer ones at 200 - 300 m long will be like, though I might be able to take a few days for them. I had planned to tie salvaged chicken mesh over the top of the hingejoint to stop the goats from getting themselves stuck but pulling the mesh out of the dump turned out to be a whole lot more complicated than I'd anticipated. I ended up wiring the remaining portion of a roll of foot netting over the bigger holes where they usually run into trouble, and finished up the rest with more hingejoint offset enough so the holes are now too small to fit a goat head. I've now only got the 18m and the 30m sides to go. I'm thinking I may need to fork out the money for a roll of netting, though I'm going to try pulling the mesh out of the dump with a winch first.

The eastern fence

I also had a chance to speak to the neighbour, and he thinks he'll be up to do the shed site shortly. Fingers crossed it might be ready for next weekend, then we can begin the joy of digging the holes for the footings! Can't wait!

Spent Sunday getting back into cleaning the farmlet up. As long-time sufferers of this blog may know we were hoping to go on the local market in Spring, which is now here... Still a bit behind that schedule.

Started the day out fixing the front fence up so that it looked more neat, and contemplated the fence that needed to be cut to get the sewer through, and gave up thoughts of trying to repair it after the adventures with the other one (short lengths don't strain well... even after many years of trying) I think we'll get some lengths of pig mesh or sheep yard mesh and make a solid fence that way.

Following fencing we went to the local Show for a while. The kids had a ride on a pony, a few zooms down the jumping-castle cross slippery dip, a browse through the exhibits for the competitions, and a look at the four-odd specimens of poultry entered this year, and the various goats, sheep and cattle. After that it was a jump on a different castle, a dagwood dog each, and then a sit-down in the shade while they judged the junior show princesses and jackaroos, and then held a fashion parade. A choc-top each, which required a fair bit of cleaning up afterward, and we judged the show experience complete for another year, so set off back home.

Orchard in bloom.

A delightful (27 degree) afternoon was spent compiling a load of rubbish for the tip, which was carted off, and then trying to hide the greater amount of stuff that I brought back with me. I'm now the proud owner of a good stack of short pieces of corrugated & colourbond roofing, and a weighty pile of star picket pieces in various lengths. The roofing will be ideal for chook sheds and similar projects, and the old star pickets will be great to cut down for stakes for building garden edging. A most profitable excursion! Rather than unload all that lot I started adding to it all of the remaining outdoor goods that can safely live outside over at the new place, which further helped to clean the place up.

We've decided that as soon as we have the shed built we're going to market, we're not going to worry about the millions of jobs that we could complete in order to try and get a better price. we'd end up staying here forever! If we're going into a rental next then we need a place to store everything, so the shed is a priority, but once that's done, no more excuses!! So maybe there is only 3 or 4 weeks to go? Maybe...


Gavin said...

Geoff, that fence looks great. I reckon there is a lot of blood sweat and tears in that hard day's work.


Geoff said...

Hi Gav,

Thankfully I'm just skilled enough as a photographer to hide the worst aspects of the fence ;-) Unfortunately there's still more blood to go as I haven't got the barbed wire up on it yet... Ugh!


Anonymous said...

I had a fence overall this last spring, which I hadn't planned for.

Still, a good working fence is a valuable asset, so I would recommend look forward to its completion with a positive mindset; makes the job much more enjoyable! Try playing some of your favorite music while you work (and a cup of tea here and there also provides a lift).



Anonymous said...

that should be "fence OVERHAUL"...

Geoff said...

There is certainly something meditative in fencing so it's not totally un-enjoyable. And of course there's always the joy of being able to plant out an orchard that will follow the completion of the fence, so there's a lot to make it worthwhile!!

Onesimus said...

G'Day Geoff,

Three years ago I moved from Sydney to a town 4 hours west.

The initial dream was to buy a house with a few acres but considering my wife does not drive we realised we needed a place in town.

While I have the occasional regret about the need for the compromise, I have to acknowledge that I would be ill equipped for work like fencing and the other constant requirements of maintaining even a small acreage.

Geoff said...

Hi Onesimus,

I can understand that sentiment, especially the day after a load of work, I feel twice my age! They also say there are problems with property half way between small and big. On a small one the work isn't too demanding, on a big one machinery then becomes a valid proposition, but in between is no-mans land ;-)

I'm hoping once we get set up out at the new place we'll be able to tap into WWOOFers and similar initiatives, and of course there is the quest to get likeminded people to buy up the remaining places next door so we can pool labour and resources. Not a lot of progress on the latter option yet.

You must be in the same general area as we are, being that far from Sydney!

Onesimus said...

Hi Geoff,
I see you are in the Central West. I live in the "South West Slopes" in the "Hilltops Region".

After deciding to move from Sydney we checked out towns around 4 hours away from Sydney: from Parkes in the north through to Junee in the south.

We ended up 2 hours from Canberra and just under 2 hours from Wagga. That's close enough to a city if we need one but far enough away to avoid dependency.


Geoff said...

Hi Tim,

Nice region you're in, some great wines from around there as well!!