Is it Peter Rabbit?

rabbitThis rabbit has taken up residence in our citrus orchard.  It seems to be a domesticated rabbit but we have no idea from where it came.  It doesn’t seem to be frightened of humans and it doesn’t dig holes, unlike the wild rabbits that we have here.

It would appear that someone has lost a pet!

 

 

Butter makes it better.

Those of you who know me well will know of my love of butter.  As I was “shaving off a bit of butter” for my morning toast this morning it brought back memories of my mum and dad.

breakfast butterThere are many reasons for this but the first one is the fact that the butter formed into a curl.  The curl was what triggered the memories.  Mum used to get us to curl the butter when she had visitors coming.   The tool we used was a very basic piece of equipment and I always had great difficulty in getting the butter to make curls to my satisfaction.  Mine never turned out quite like those expert ones in the photo below.

Expert butter curls

David Masters – FlickrCurled Butter

The tool you can buy nowadays looks like this.

modern curling tool

The tool we used wasn’t in a curved shape, it was a flat blade with the serrations on it, the blade being the width of the butter curl.

In my breakfast photo of the butter curl you can see our butter dish.  Our original butter dish was one that I sent away for after watching Peter Russell Clarke on television.  He used to sprout about how butter makes it better and there was a special offer for a cheap butter dish.  It looked just like the one I have now.  The original was broken many years ago. If you have no idea who Peter Russell Clarke is you will need to check out this short video.

The memories of my dad was that he used to rib me about the amount of butter I used.  He would say things like “Are you sure you have enough butter with your bread?”

It’s interesting how an everyday event can trigger so many memories.

I then remembered how we used to be sent for the messages. The grocer was Mr Green (correction – Mr Storer, my sister has a better memory than I do) and he used to parcel up the butter after cutting off the amount we required. We also used to get Lurpak butter, which was Danish, and New Zealand butter. My childhood was spent in Scotland.

(Mr Green was the auctioneer not the grocer!)

Betty Botter

 

Licorice allsorts with a difference

My latest piece of knitting, in between the knitting of the shawl I am making, is this quirky  piece I found in an old craft book I had.

allsortsThe pattern calls for 7mm needles and chunky wool.  No tension given so I assumed that 14 ply would be the type that was used.  I have knitted the orange and black one but it looks to be much smaller that the one illustrated.  Maybe when it is stuffed it will look bigger as the wool will stretch.

I haven’t sewn the pieces together yet but I will post a picture of the finished articles later.  This is the book where I found the pattern.

The great book of handicrafts

The happiest refugee

I borrowed this book from the library.  I had read a great deal in the media about this book a few years ago but only now have I got round to borrowing it.

the happiest refugee

Australia, at the moment is going through a period where petty politics is playing a large part when it comes to people seeking asylum here. I wont get into the debate but I will say that Australia is a huge country and surely there is enough room and resources for those seeking asylum.  

Anh Do is an Australian comedian and started off by doing shows on what it was like to be an immigrant in an immigrant family in Australia.

His book tells of his life as he grew up in Australia as a poor, Vietnamese refugee.  He also tells how his family escaped Vietnam in a boat and the difficulties that entailed.

This is a very easy book to read as it is really just a collection of incidents in his life and he manages to find the humour in the most trying circumstances.

It’s a good book, full of humour. It shows how refugees work hard to make the most of the opportunity they have been given by being in a new country that is safe for them.  Now why don’t the politicians realise this?

Common people common dreams

2014-361--the-refugees-dilemma-AUSTRALIA-TORTURE-ASYLUM-SEEKER-POLICY-

(I realise it has the copyright mark on it but I have read the copyright on the website and the general public can use the cartoon image for free)

An abundance of limes

Unlike our lack of passionfruit we have more limes than we know what to do with.

limesThere is only so much lime marmalade and lime pickle that you can consume and we have had lime tea cake, lime cordial etc. so I have now resorted to freezing the lime juice

frozen lime juiceso I can make use of that rather than letting the limes go to waste. I will use the frozen juice to make Daiquiris.  Now that is a good use for limes.

CocktailApparently the daiquiri was the favourite drink of JFK and Ernest Hemingway.

daiquiri recipe

I use 45ml rum and 30 ml of lime juice and a handful of crushed ice along with 2 tsp caster sugar.

A passion for passionfruit

Since moving to Metung we thought we would be able to grow passionfruit without too much difficulty as the climate is more temperate here than the weather in Canberra.  In the five years we have been here we have planted three passionfruit. The first two were grafted plants and the type was Nellie Kelly Grafted Black.  We had no luck whatsoever as both plants died.  Before I bought another plant I took the time to ask the nurseryman why I had no luck with the previous two plants I had bought. ( I didn’t buy them at this particular nursery.)  He informed me that for some reason he found that the grafted passionfruit were not so successful as those that were none grafted and he recommended a different plant for me. This is the plant that we purchased.

ungrafted passionfruitNaturally I was prepared to give it a go as I did so want to have a passionfruit vine.  I had visions of passionfruit sponge and pavlova with passionfruit, passionfruit ice cream . . . you get the general idea.

Tah Dah! We have success with this new plant.  It is now in its second year and look what we have.passionfruit flower

Our first flower.  I am hoping that it converts into a fruit and I am also hoping that we will see a few more flowers.

The vine is in an ideal spot so hopefully it will be productive.

passionfruit vine It has taken us a while to get this far but I think we might be on the right track for passionfruit pavlova etc.  I can but hope.

Classic Passion Fruit Pavlova_001

 

 

Miles off course, this is Rowland Sinclair again

This is the book I missed in the Rowland Sinclair series.  It doesn’t seem to matter that I have read it out of order as the books work well as stand alone novels.

miles off course

From the cover:

In early 1933, Rowland Sinclair and his companion are ensconced in the superlative luxury of The Hydro Majestic – Medlow Bath, where trouble seems distant indeed.

And then Harry Simpson vanishes.

Croquet and pre-dinner cocktails are abandoned for the High Country where Rowland hunts for Simpson with a determination that is a mysterious as the disappearance itself.  Stockmen, gnagsters and a belligerent writer all gather to the fray, as the investigation becomes embroiled with a much darker conspiracy.

 Murder, treason trespass kidnapping betrayal. . .again Rowland Sinclair finds himself in the middle of it all.

The Hydro Majestic is in the process of rejuvenation at present and it is worth having a look at the website to see how the hotel looked in Rowland Sinclair’s day.

I loved this book in the series, the main reason being it was set in the High Country.  Places all had a familiarity to me which makes the story even more realistic.  Yarrangobilly, Adaminaby, Tumut, Batlow, Tumbarumba.

I have fond memories of Yarrangobilly in particular.  There is a thermal pool there and that was mentioned in the novel.  Our children swam in the pool when they were very small children. ( There were massive tadpoles in the pool!)

The book is another really enjoyable read. It involves politics, romance, cattlemen and of course crime and the Rowland Sinclair set.

The Rowland Sinclair books are easy reading and a joy to read.

You can read an extract from the book here.

This is another book for my Historical Fiction Reading Challenge.