Some random photographs taken during 2022, most close to my home. Although there was much more freedom to roam than in the previous two years, life seemed to be focused on the scenes, animals and community activities of our local area. There is much to be grateful for and as we all head into 2023 may that continue. Happy New Year.
Merry Christmas across the world from my home to yours!
Wet, wet, wet, spring
By Lynn Elder
Splashes of yellow bright sunshine comes between, Splashes of water bouncing upon the already drenched earth. Splashes of red and blue announce the arrival of the rosellas, Splashes of water in the bowls as they frolic and beg for seed. Splashes and quacking as ducks land on overflowing dams. Splashes of running water cascading over temporary waterways. Splashes of mud and water as gumboots wade through. Splashes and squelching as cattle sink into the quagmire. Splashes of furious currents as spillways release the excess water. Splashes as the four-wheel drive negotiates the potholes and puddles. Splashes on the ground as the rainwater tank overflows. Splashes of colour emerge in the form of flowers when grey clouds roll away. Splashes of flowery fashions appear on the sunny spring days. Splashes continue with each rainy day that insists on not stopping too soon.
The moods of spring
By Lynn Elder
Oh, what personality does spring display When it thinks it is time to play. Spring can be so fickle, Also, so changeable. Spring can be a myriad of colours As bursting buds bring forth the flowers, Then disappear in a breeze, With the sudden arrival of a wintry freeze. There is a promise of radiant sunshine, For which we did all through winter pine, For a return of some warmth to bask in, And feel the sensation on our skin. Spring does have a gentle side to its personality, Amidst all the activity and vitality. Blossom petals fall softly like light bird feathers, And newborn lambs and calves snuggle against mothers, To herald in the hope and joy of spring.
First month of winter
By Lynn Elder
The icy embrace of snowy climes soon brings autumn to its knees. No good praying for it not to be when winter arrives on time. Artic blasts keep temperatures in check while us mere mortals shiver, And slosh about in rubber boots to keep the water out.
Black & white & in-between
By Lynn Elder Grey clouds form a leaden sky Above the black cattle grazing below. Tree trunks are blackened By the dampness they absorb From heavy downpours Released from above. Dimming daylight alternates Between the various shades Of white, grey and black. Birds and pets alike match The colour scheme of the day.
Twixt autumn and winter
Autumn is usually that settled period before winter arrives in earnest but this year it seems different. Spring is notorious for its fickle nature and the way that winter really doesn’t want to be gone too soon. A fellow blogger got me thinking about the time between seasons with his series on micro-seasons. This seems to be rooted in the Japanese culture unlike our western ideal of four seasons. We cannot mold the seasons to suit our requirements so maybe accepting these subtle or not so subtle periods twixt the seasons makes good sense.
Looking through my photos I was reminded of those occasions and activities that fall into autumn. Here in Victoria we start with a public holiday known as Labour Day in March. Then comes April holidays and the marking of Easter on the Christian calendar. On April 25 we also remember sacrificial love and duty to God and country when World War One broke out and so many took up arms to protect us. Sadly World War Two followed and other conflicts continue. ANZAC Day is not about glorifying war but honouring those who served. Younger generations of Australians and New Zealanders are learning about this part of their history. This year with no COVID restrictions more than 300 people turned out for the dawn service in our small town followed by the traditional gun fire breakfast usually a bacon and egg sandwich. Later in the morning there is a procession where veterans and other community groups and individuals are proudly involved.
The view from my bedroom window is changing with the arrival of foggy mornings and hot air balloons on crisp clear mornings. We see a red fox slinking through the grass in search of food and other times a family group of kangaroos waiting for the sun to arrive.
May is also when we celebrate Mother’s Day in Australia with all its commercial focus on pampering Mums everywhere. I managed a trip interstate to visit my own Mum. Last year, the borders between the states were being closed due to COVID and I just got home only hours before they were. I enjoy the larger open farming spaces of where I grew up. While visiting there was lots of burning off of stubble to make way for the next lot of crops. There is very little cropping near where I live now.
A new array of autumn colours has emerged while other trees shed their leaves freely. The sound of chainsaws echo in the valley as firewood is gathered for the coming cold months. The latest load of Black Angus steers has departed. Our birdlife changes with the seasons and weather. The colourful and cheeky King Parrots come searching for some wild bird seed. The weather has been a mixture of sun and rain with snow forecast this week on the nearby mountain. No doubt winter will arrive soon enough and with it comes the thought that we are almost halfway through another year!
Nature is not only what is visible to the eye – it shows the inner images of the soul – the images on the back side of the eyes.-Edvard Munch (1863-1944) Norwegian painter and printmaker
Come fly with me
Easter a time of hope
We enjoyed an Easter without lockdowns here in Victoria and many are making the most of this beautiful autumnal weather here in my hometown. Our church was packed today with adults and children to celebrate Easter Day. We have a tradition at our Anglican church where we enjoy wine made by one of our parishioners and home-made chicken sandwiches after the the service. It was so lovely to see families out and about enjoying quality time together.
There is a sense of hope and looking forward to the future after a difficult two years. Here’s to us being kinder and more loving towards one another and speaking out against evil and injustice. Happy Easter to all.
Shades of Autumn
“Autumn shows us how beautiful it is to let things go.” – Unknown
The clocks were turned back during the first weekend of April and it seems to have coincided with a definite change in the seasons. There is a coolness in the evening air despite some days of sunshine. The mid-March temperatures in the low 30s and annoying blow flies seem to have disappeared here in Victoria. But April can produce some stunning Autumn weather to enjoy over the Easter holidays. Will wait and see. We have avoided floods here but our hearts go out to those especially in NSW who have experienced severe flooding twice within a month.
For me autumn offers a calming time of year. It is subtle and yet spectacular as it reveals its hidden beauty. From green to gold, yellow to red. Here in North East Victoria the colours of autumn tend to really come into their own about mid April to early May. Then the great shedding of leaves starts as we approach winter. Raking is one way to get a good work out!
Over the weekend I explored our 25 acres with camera in hand for different perspectives and to capture the various tints and hues of the changing season. I also managed to find glorious brightly-coloured flowers.
There was also a visit to one of my favourite local places, Jamieson, an historic Victorian township on the river and in the bush-clad hills that were once home to many searching for gold. My husband and I attended the once a month Anglican church service which was followed by lunch in a nearby café.
Whatever season you may be going through, remember to enjoy the one you are going through now!
A run of hot, humid days accompanied by thunderstorms has been the norm for most of March. A wetter than usual winter and spring created unprecedented grass growth. Good news for those who had hay to cut and bale, but for others on smaller acreage like ourselves, keeping on top of the mowing is a constant task. When there was minimal rainfall, grass growth was a lot slower. But seeing our dams full and household tanks almost at capacity, we are not complaining.
We had hot and dry conditions for our annual campdraft just gone, which made it a top weekend for competitors and spectators alike. Being on the committee kept me busy with various activities over the two days. I will do a separate post on the Australian equestrian sport of campdrafting and share some photos.
With its still calm weather conditions, autumn also marks a period of planned burn-offs in our high country. While this is designed to reduce the fuel load in the bush and mountain areas, the smoke haze can make one feel like they are living in an ashtray. It has been a long time since I have hung out in a smokey journo’s bar. I used to go home and hang my good jacket on the clothesline to get rid of the smell. I couldn’t afford to pay for the dry cleaners too often!
However, the smoke haze does provide some superb sunset photo opportunities. Another night we saw this large, red glow in the distance due to a burn-off in some stubble that flared up. Earlier this week, a storm and some rain cleared the air. Another photo opportunity.
This morning was the coolest start for several months, but it has been a lovely warm, sunny day. One can sense a change in the seasons and see the changes in the leaves of grapevines and various trees. Daylight saving is due to end the first weekend in April, which will see a return to being lighter early in the morning and becoming dark much sooner in the late afternoon.
On one side of the world, spring is bursting forth while here we prepare for the coming winter months. That includes sourcing more fire food and putting away the summer clothes. As restrictions and lockdowns disappear and we are told we need to learn to live with COVID, one dares to dream of travelling to warmer climes and visiting friends and family over the coming weeks.
Late afternoon and suddenly, the smoke haze returns, clinging to the sides of the valleys. I better close windows and doors to keep the smell out and rescue the washing from outside before it absorbs the smokey aroma. Happy weekend everyone.
Five year anniversary, what does it mean?
Happy Anniversary with WordPress.com!
You registered on WordPress.com 5 years ago.
Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging.
This just popped up in my notifications and although I knew this blogging journey began in 2017 it still took me by surprise to see it has been five years. It coincided with my move from the city back to my country origins to begin a new life with my husband on 25 acres. Some things have worked out as expected and others have had their challenges, but looking back and given what has expired with the COVID-19 Pandemic, we made the right decision for us. My blog started out as more of a journal in words and pictures but now it is time to expand my horizons and stretch my creative self more than ever. There have been some sad goodbyes and happy moments to relish but through it all there has been a divine hand on my life. May my faith not waiver as we embrace another year of uncertainty but discover how precious life is and all that we have to be grateful for. Happy blogging one and all!