Spring flowers at the humpy

Lately, I have been forced to slow down and look at the ground more (to avoid falling over a lot), that has led to noticing a lot more of the small and unnoticed flowers that grow here. I don’t have any idea whether most of these are native plants or not, I don’t know what they are called at all, but they are beautiful. I thought I would share the beauty with you. If you know the names of any of these little beauties, leave a comment.

And a few from my garden (I know what these ones are).

In some ways, I am grateful for my dizzy spells; they have let me slow down and really see all the beauty that surrounds us again. On the other hand, it will be wonderful to be able to move around fast without falling over again too.

Eggs everywhere- it sure is Spring

There are three people living in the humpy at the moment; one can’t eat eggs, one won’t eat eggs, then there is me. We have 8 laying hens, about 6 laying ducks and 2 laying geese; we collect about 8 eggs a day, or about 66 eggs a week. If you compare both sides of this scale you can see that a lot of eggs get wasted, and I hate waste.

I do attempt to use all our eggs, but have failed miserably in the task so far. Some of the methods we use are;

Fried eggs on weekends (for me)- this uses up about 4 eggs a week

Trading them to friends for veges- about a 12 a week

Using them in baking – about 6 a week

Making quiche (not every week)- about 8 a week

Giving them to a friend with an incubator- about 6 a week

All that gives me a total of, at most, 36 eggs used. I did freeze 2 dozen for use when they all stop laying, but that was a temporary reprieve. I don’t want to sell eggs (too many regulations) and most of my friends have chooks and are in the same predicament as I am (but if you live close and want eggs let me know, especially duck eggs).

So, to address some of the extra eggs, I went looking for egg recipes that could be made then frozen. That way we use the eggs and I have another meal that can be heated up for dinner. This is what I found;

Scrambled eggs, beans and sauce in a burrito; love the sound of this one.

Blueberry scones with icing; sounds delicious

Baked French toast sticks; okay we’ve drifted away from the idea of dinners, but they do use eggs.

Egg and vegetable noodle slice; freezable and good for lunch or dinner.

Halloumi, cheese and egg hot pot; sounds good, but I’m not sure it will freeze.

Broccolli and feta strata; whatever that is.

I’m not going to try all these recipes in one day (I do hate to cook), but I think I can manage one each weekend. That should fill the freezer with breakfasts, lunches and dinners for the first frantic weeks of school.

We also take some of the excess eggs out to the edge of the firebreaks for the goannas and possums. In these dry times all our native animals are searching for food and water. The sheep water troughs and the occasional water tray around the outskirts of the humpy provide water for wildlife and the excess eggs provide just a little nutrition for struggling beings.

I know this sends a mixed message; we don’t want goannas in the house yard and the possums can be very destructive too. I do it because I can see a day, not too far in the future, when animals that are common now will be rare and endangered. I do it because I don’t want any being to suffer and if I have the means to ease suffering, it is my duty to do it. I do it because I love to see the variety of animals who show up to take advantage of the free food.

Eggs show up in the strangest places.

Its Spring, get outside

I love being outside; the sound of life busily happening all around me, the smell of flowers, hot earth and animals (even poop), watching animals and plants doing what they do and the feel of the sun and wind on my skin. At this time of year, if you live in a humpy, there is a lot to do outside which apparently keeps me healthy and will prolong my life.

This clip just confirms what I knew all along. I bet you did too.

Ostara; the Spring equinox

Happy Ostara everyone,
It’s that time of year again; eggs, fertility (rabbits) and planting seeds. The spring equinox is one of two times in the year when day and night are of equal length, this day marks the middle of spring (for the planet not the calendar). It is the time for birthing lambs, first chickens hatching and summer vegetable crops being planted.
This year for Ostara our little Grove (a small group of witches) built a sacred garden bed and planted it with corn, beans and pumpkin (the three sisters).
We measured the bed using our Athames and a cord in the traditional manner

The bed and the post positions were marked out with gypsum (no ritual significance in gypsum, we just had some)

We measured and measured again; my High Priestess is a Libra.

The quarters (four directions) were marked with posts, then the cross quarters were marked with more posts (steel pegs really)
A poly pipe frame was added, then wire around the base and a bird net over the top.
Oh and a gate was added. 
The bed is made up of layers of newspaper, alpaca poop and bladey grass mulch in a no-dig garden style.

It took us about half a day to build the bed, but it was time well spent.
Then we held our ritual where we blessed the seeds for the year’s planting and planted our crop in the garden.

I found the seed blessing below online, but I can’t seem to find it again; so thank you to whoever wrote it. We held our seeds and said this blessing over them before planting.

Seed blessing

Now the dark half of the year is passing
Now the days grow light, and the Earth grows warm
I summon the spirit of these seeds
Which have slept in darkness
Awaken, stir, and swell
As you are planted in the Earth
To grow and bring forth new fruit.
Blessed be!
And this morning when I got up, one of the hens has hatched a chicken; perfect timing.

Imbolc already and spring is here

It’s that time of year again; the snow drops are flowering, so is the hardenbergia in the bush. The chooks are laying and looking for nest sites. All my seedlings are coming up and I have an urge to plant more than we could possibly eat; it must be spring.
At the start of spring we hold the festival of Imbolc; it is held when the first snow drops flower and celebrates the return of life and heat to the land. We also have a bonfire, an outdoor meal and lots of mead.

snow drops…or snow flakes; I can never remember which is which and they flower at the same time.

Seedlings in newspaper pots starting to emerge.

Hardenbergia in the bush

Our Imbolc altar

The bonfire

The alter after dark

Some background

I thought it was about time I introduced the Humpy. We moved to our bush block in 2008 and built a shed after living in a tiny caravan for three months with two teenage girls (incentives to build galore). Unfortunately my partner discovered that three walls will hold up a roof and deemed that to be shelter enough.
Since then we have successfully built a lot of ramshackle animal housing and got a few creature comforts for ourselves too.
Have a browse through the early days of the Humpy.