A bit of a yarn and weekend reads

What a week!

It’s been a week of first world disasters here at the farm.  First, the solar controller died.  It was getting on in years as we had moved it from the caravan to the yurt, although it’s an easy problem to solve by ordering a new one online.  It's inconvenient, to say the least.  Then our back up generator died out of the blue, leaving us with no power, and no satellite internet this week.  The generator is under warranty, but still a major pain while it gets sorted none the less.  It means we need to use a laundromat for the washing which is an expensive hassle.  If I'm a little quiet here over the next week or two that is why, though I will pop on when I can.  

I have mentioned this year about how challenging things have been financially since we moved here.  Part of that was because Grant was working casually.  Though his hourly rate was fine, it meant he didn't get paid public holidays, had no holidays, or sick pay and when it was quiet he got sent home or was given a day off.  Each week we would work hard to get ahead, and then a quiet week would put us two steps backwards.  It was frustrating and stressful.

This sweet girl has been tucked into my sewing box, forgotten about.  This weekend I'll be spending a little time working on her clothes.

Weekend reads and our year of less update.

We have been continuing with our year of less project and it is going well.  We have a new clear budget for our lives here and identified some areas we need to reduce.  Our budget is still too tight but we are getting there slowly.  Fortunately, our tax return has allowed us to pay off some things in full, which will free some money.  Grant has also received a small pay rise which finally gives us a nearly workable budget.  Just.

Grant built this gate out of free salvaged hardwood.  The latch is a simple block of wood that slides in and out of the strainer post with a bolt attached as a knob.  Taking the time to DIY these kinds of things saves a lot of money, though it does require patience and time.    

hello there

Hello there dear readers, how are you?

5 out of the 6 kids balancing on an old stump.

school holidays!

It's been cold and wet here at the farm.  Our tracks have turned into a slippery mess, the washing was mounting up in front of my eyes and we were all feeling irritable and fed up by the constant mud.  Throw in all 5 of us coming down with a nasty flu, and the yurt was beginning to feel very small.

The boys watching a movie on a cold morning.  

What is off-grid living?

The basic definition of 'off-grid' simply means to not be connected to mains power, mains water and town effluent.  But the way people live this out in a practical sense differs widely from person to person.

Our off-grid yurt. 

meandering thoughts and farm kids

There is always something to do here, and every weekend Will can be found working alongside Grant.  Collecting and splitting firewood, helping with fencing, carting water and he even helps Grant with the woodroaches which is something I refuse to go near.  When Grant wants to take a rest, Will often hassles him to "Get back to work Dad!"  which always makes me chuckle.  He has always been a beautiful kid, but by golly, he is thriving here in ways I couldn't have imagined.  Grant is always inclusive and patient with the boys as they learn to work alongside him and I'll never tire of watching them all together. 

Weekend Reads

Winter has well and truly settled in and we often wake up to a heavy fog which has blanketed our valley.  The mornings are beautiful here.  Once the kids are off to school grab my camera, let the dogs out for a good run while I go for a walk to collect kindling for the fire.     

  

Whats been happening on the farm.

I have not managed much time here on the blog this past week as we have had my parents visiting from South Australia for 11 days, which was wonderful.  The boys loved seeing them, and though we may live 2000km away, these kinds of visits are of great quality with plenty of time to catch up over a cuppa and home cooked meals.  They left for home this morning and the farm is oh so quiet.  It's just me, the dogs, the cat, Gwinny the neighbor's old horse and a few of their cattle which have decided to pop over for a visit.  

There has been plenty of time hanging out in the yurt which whilst small, with plenty of work to be done before it's finished, is perfectly comfortable.   

wild dogs and the beginning of winter

Winter has well and truly hit here.  It's delightfully cold, windy and raining.  The tanks badly need a top up and with the rain settled in like it has, it should fill both of them.   

Henry feeling a little brighter helping me check on the first rise of tonight's bread.  

weekend reads and a thing I did.

I did a thing, and it is pretty cool.

Sitting down and reading all the wonderful articles over breakfast. 

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