Eeeks…time flies and months have gone by without getting a blog entry done and dusted. So this entry should come with a could-be-a-long-one disclaimer. I’ll also be much better at getting updates done. Thank you for the kind messages checking in that we were okay.
The heat of summer smashed into The Stomp with ferocity. The house has coped well except for when these tiny little insects descended. They got through the screens and the house filled with them around every light. It was bloody horrible. I really dislike those little buggers…..INTENSELY. Much cleaning and vacuuming was had the next day. Luckily the solar was pumping and my Shark vacuum made short work of a freakin hideous chore.
The heat has been way above 30 for weeks now and we remain nervous regarding fire. Tomorrow will be 41 and winds up to 45km/h. There is a total fire ban again. We hit just over 41 today.
Bit scary. Currently conditions are extreme and likely to turn catastrophic within the next 24 hours. George is working in Canberra tomorrow so we are in town tonight watching the fire app obsessively. There are no fires anywhere near us at this point. Phew!
The crispy summer mornings, while beautiful, feel hot and dry. The dam is still green and wonderfully alive however it has receded, a lot, as is expected. We have plenty of water stored for drinking and irrigation drippers but some non storm rain over a few days would be highly appreciated.
Soooo, let’s break this down….
The Deck Project.
Still no roof 🙂 The deck has been very well used over summer. We were given a beaut old outdoor lounge set. It needs a bit of repair but no one seemed to mind over summer and you would often find a Stomper laying out in the cooler night air. Very comfy. We also scored a matching, free glass topped dining table and 6 chairs. The deck is such an amazing addition. I don’t know how we got through last summer with a tiny window in the container, and no beloved deck!
Last week I got a cool, little, old bar and some old comfy bar stools (4) from the local gumtree site. 50 bucks!! BARGAIN (and they threw in a free old iron chiminea). I’ll wait until the roof is on and a fence put on that end of the deck before I set it up because:
1. It’s not hardwood
2. The fence may be very necessary after a few drinks and I imagine there will be an assortment of would be bar tenders plying their trade, in a disorderly state, after a night at the bar.
We are still deciding on the ratio of corri and clear to get the balance right between full shade and light for the southern end of the house.
The boys did, however, get the sliding door framed and a step platform built just inside the house side made from decking boards. Looks very cool after having Sikkaboom hanging out the cavities for nearly a year. It’s newly insulated behind/above the door frame and the curtains are now running freely on a curtain rod, instead of panels on S hooks. Very freakin civilised!
George has the building bug on and he also made me a great little platform for my bar stool so I can reach the new workbench that we picked up. George has braced it to be more solid and moved it into the outdoor nook which is going to be my little studio. It’s high so I can watch the birds and going ons in the yard. Perfect throne to sit and create. Bought myself a terrific yellow vice too! We now also have a beaut gate so that the dogs can be kept in either side of the house, if needed. George whipped it up from a pallet and it’s perfect.
The New Entry and Yard Wildlife Area Project.
Yeah, nah. The Wisteria has gone bonkers and undone a lot of my days of work. However, the size of the funnel webs that make the holes in my yard and not to be trifled with, so the entry project is alive but on hold until cooler months. I don’t want to come across something that doesn’t like my whipper snipper or inadvertently kill a sweet little reptile hiding in the ground cover, so it’s all natures again until autumns end.
The other side of the house is where I am building a little escape for birds and small reptiles. It will feature a pond which is dug to shape but needs to go a bit deeper for retention. I’ve piled up a heap of large branches, that Stompers have collected for me, ready to extend the perches I already have dug in. These are used heavily by our bird life. Because I had to move the pile for mowing, I threw it over a tyre in the mini refuge area. To our delight a bearded dragon mama thought it the perfect place to have her babies. She, Aretha is the proud mother of twins Jimi and Hendrix. Can you imagine washing the dishes while watching tiny baby beardies at play? Jimi tends to stay close by their entry hole on the upper branches and is a shy one. Hendrix on the other hand is very brave and social. He runs around the lawn area on his tiny hind legs. It’s unbelievably cute. George went out to take a pic of him and he happily ran up and posed. He was within a metre of George. Paradise, I tell ya!
Christmas and New Year.
Yup! I love Christmas time. You can Bah and you can Humbug but I will still decorate and put up the tree and torture you with Christmas Carols. This year the Hansons Christmas album featured heavily. They all secretly loved the music choice, well, they didn’t really love it, I guess. 🙂
My mum and sister came out for the day and friends and family arrived throughout the day. We had a big BBQ and delicious salads, fresh bread rolls and lots treats. Very simple bush Christmas lunch with a crew of lovelies.
We partied on over the next few days and had a bit of a do for NYE. And now the Happy New Years are a month in and the Christmas boxes are packed up and gone back into the store container. Another year gone and I still love Christmas time.
I bought a few of the Stompers little inflatable row boats for the waterhole as xmas gifts and they were a bit of fun. George often swims in the dam but he just strips off spontaneously has a swim, gets out, no drying just dressed again and goes on about his business. Such a caveman, my gorgeous partner. We also celebrated 6 years together last week. That time has flown. I love that fella.
The Dogs – Gypsy and Dinii (Dynamite)
The friendship between the tall and the short of it has reached an understanding. They spend almost all their time together and don’t like not being near one another. They do gave a snap at each other at times, usually Gypsy enforcing her dominance. We encourage her to remain dominant and always feed her first and allow her first go at kibble. He is so big already in comparison so she has to be allowed her dominance. Although he’s grown much bigger, he is still just a puppy and very floppy with those long, long legs. He’s also in the very naughty stage. It’s just as well he such a loveable rogue as he tests my patience daily!!! He is a large breed so they desex much later. We are assuming desexing will settle some of his behaviours. He’s responding well to treat training. George does a lot of bush training with him. He thinks George is the ants pants and just loves these training walks. Gypsy of course goes along but as she is already good out on the property she thinks the treats are just presents and accepts them gratefully. Dinii loves his bed and goes into it when we go to crash for the night and stays in it or on the floor near it. We have found that the clay in the waterhole is actually cleaning their fur/skin. Their coats are like silk and although white Gypsy comes back up covered in mud, once she’s cleaned herself off she is bright white. Luckily we have a lot of lush reeds in the wetland part of the water and they keep the water fresh and filtered even if muddy from stirring the clay up.
Around The Place.
There’s cider brewing in the secret room (that’s another blog on it’s own), James’ beer in a shed. There’s new solar lights in the party area and a public holiday in March. The second inverter has now had all the obvious burnt out parts replaced. Some mossfets and 2 capacitors. George and Michael have been working on it over the past few days and apparently it has a date with the multi meter and hopefully this means I’ll have my power points working again.
Right now we are using power boards and extension cords for appliances but the fridge and lights run off another system which has an emergency power point which we are using to run everything else. No problem with having enough power. We have even disconnected a bank of batteries as we don’t need them…and we do pump the power 🙂 Love no power bills but still able to run anything an on grid house can. The toilet fan died out and that was not ideal! I was not a happy chappy as there is no way, no how, I’m living with a stinking toilet. George found the fan and replaced it with a new one. Since then it’s been back to it’s non smelly self. Lesson learnt though, It doesn’t just stop, it dies out slowly and we need to catch it MUCH earlier next time.
We are having our work shirts/overalls screened with our new Stomp pic and we will also be selling TShirts to help raise some funds for the first enclosure. By law an outdoor enclosure must be a minimum of 10×7 metres (iirc) so it’s quite a task as we have to sink L shaped mesh 30cms down and at a right angle 30cms into the enclosure to prevent burrowing straight through the bottom. Add star pickets, fencing wire, fencing mesh and it soon adds up, so we thought this might be a fun way to add to the enclosure kitty.
I’m sure I will think of a hundred things I meant to add but for now that’s been the goings on at Wombat Stomp.
I’ll leave this with some pics of my new friends at the dream job I started in February. Working in the wildlife industry is a true blessing. My office is 200 acres of wonderful bushland about an hours drive away. My work mates are a few dozen wombats with the odd orphan duckling and/or roo or bird thrown in for diversity. My bosses are dear friends who are like family.
Sure, there’s going to be obstacles and challenges as we continue to move forward with our plans for The Stomp but there is so much more joy that the bad days are soon dissipated into the beauty of the bush as dusk hits and shines it up like a jewel.
Good night from Wombat Stomp 🙂
Until next time….Pass it on!