Weekend away to Brisbane

Nick and I seldom leave the property for much time together so a trip to Brisbane for a friend’s birthday party and catching up with a few others was a great mini-holiday!

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So while Jaffa enjoyed a sleep-over with his best mate Andy… and while our helper Rambaud from France watched over our place…

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We enjoyed markets, musicians, antique trucks, and even some beach time.

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We caught up with our friends Ken and Maria and enjoyed a feast prepared by her celebrity chef Mother (thanks again!) After an hour or so we could not help ourselves and enjoyed a splash and play in their pool.

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Speaking of Bees…

We’ve had our first hive since September and though its a smaller 9 frame unit — it seems too full as the bees are hyper active. The FlowHive makes extracting honey pretty simple for us and low-impact for our bees and its made locally near Brisbane. Isn’t it the cutest hive?

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To make room for more honey – it was time to collect our first batch of golden delicious organic honey which the bees have been busy creating from the many plants and trees on our place. The smell was tremendous!

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Sadly, during the process they swarmed again and stayed away from the hive for a full day. That means it’s time to capture and re-home them.

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Lucky I found them the nearby tree and was able to knock them into a box from the branch they were clung to. The hive stayed there in the shade while I dashed to Yandina and got our second hive.

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Capturing them was easy… getting them (mostly) into their new hive was okay…yet they swarmed yet again and flew to another Hoop Pine far out of reach yet still fairly close-by.

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So back to the original hive honey harvest… all told, we got 18 litres (~18 quarts) of honey! We’ll sell some yet keep plenty for us ardour many guests. There is an amazing difference in taste in each frame as each worker bee stays on a frame and is fed by drones that work certain plants. Pretty amazing are bees!

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First visitors of 2019 and a flower filled season

Ange and her family came through while on a Queensland holiday and we enjoyed lunch together. She and Nick always stick a pose and do a jig!

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This time of year also sees many Wattles blossom and plenty of pollen in the air. While it’s difficult sometimes for those with hay fever — it really is a wonderful time to enjoy the flowers and fragrances.

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This time of year (much like Spring) is also a time of activity with our bees. Between hot days and many flowers — they are swarming pretty regularly — yet luckily, are returning back to their hive.

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Holiday visitors

Our dearest Annandale friends (like family) came to Queensland for a wedding and joined us for a few days including Christmas lunch. Our sistas fromBlack Mountain also joined in the merriment.

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Jan was our inspiration for leaving Sydney and finding our very own place to raise chickens. She has long dreamed of doing so herself so I carved this wooden sign for her (which she left for us to look after until she returns). It’s a lovely reminder of the influence and impact of the kindness of cherished friends.

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Just a few days later we had Mark up from Brisbane with Jose from Columbia. Between beach, sight-seeing, and hiking — we found some time to relax and enjoy a break.

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But only after a hike along the Black Mountain Canyon trail to the creek below. Mark was determined to walkover this pool — and luckily stayed dry (and well stretched! ;<)

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Forest and Friends

Our forest area has really come to life with the many Bromeliads we’ve planted and the Glass House (our tiny house) is perfectly placed to enjoy the gardens.

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What garden would be complete without a garden troll -er gnome… -er scare crow? This rather scary ceramic statue watched over the forest and in fact seems to keep bush turkey and came toads at alert!

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We’re always pleased to have friends, family, and guests stay with us… my mate Lasso came up from Byron Bay and enjoyed several hikes, much conversation, and wonderful meals together. From Frank’s Lookout, you can see we’ve enjoyed regular rain and overcast conditions which has allowed things to green and thrive.

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One of my most enjoyable outings is Mount Tinbeerwah Lookout — every visit it’s different and each time it captivating. What a magical place to share with friends!

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Watching over us all…

When helping Phillip move from Cooran, we saved an old tree which resembled a bird.

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Last week when my Grandfather Carmack passed away, I knew the perfect place for it… by our spring, just beside our beloved Deo’s Leopard tree I planted it as a memorial to Carmack and our much loved ancestors both present and past. It’s facing due North and stands out as a reminder of where we’ve come from and inspires us forward while watching over us.

 

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On a lighter note, with an abundance of rain lately, not only is the spring full — but the tree frogs and all other living things are active and flourishing. After a few warm and sunny days we had fungi popping up all over… what a good sign healthy soil!

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