Gardening And Gratitude


Hello friends.  Thank you all for your kind, supportive comments and emails on my last blog post.  I do appreciate them all and still feel a little overwhelmed.   To pay back some good energy I have been thinking about all of the tiny and random things that keep me feeling connected, optimistic and moving forwards.

I would like to introduce two Instagram friends who I also happen to have real life connections with.  These ladies both manage to post interesting aspects of their work on the land while keeping it honest, entertaining and creative.

Firstly Bec Bunyan who has been posting regular fashion updates from the paddock detailing her various pieces of woolly work clothes. This weather requires a lot of layers and safety and comfort is also a high priority, Bec nails it, right down to the balaclava and motorbike helmet.

Secondly, Jill from Copago Station   shares colourful everyday moments of her life on the land and occasionally some very clever chalk art.

Thanks Bec and Jill, your posts always make me smile and remind me why we all love life on the land.

Staying with the positive vibes I have managed to get myself back into my garden.  Spring is in the air already and there are weeds to tackle, pruning to be done and irrigation to be fixed.  After a long break from the garden it feels comforting to be back.  Even the simple task of giving the chooks some overdone greens reminded me how much I actually love gardening.

Chooks and greens

Under all of the mess I have found some brave flowers, a little crop of fenugreek and a clump of feathery, aromatic dill.  I have even harvested some cauliflowers that I have hardly looked at since I planted them.  Aren’t we lucky that gardens are relatively forgiving?



Cauliflower harvest

The cauliflower discovery prompted a tiny photoshoot which we just managed to finish seconds before a pack of curious dogs and the pet sheep came searching for something to eat.  It is a very glamorous life, thanks Annabelle x

Years ago when I first started reading blogs one of my favourites was Hugo and Elsa by Michelle Crawford . Of course Michelle has written a beautiful cookbook, A Table In The Orchard and her Chocolate Wheaty Biscuits from that book are the best. I believe Michelle has just celebrated a significant birthday so last weekend a batch seemed in order.  Happy Birthday and thank you Michelle, I love your work.

Chocolate Wheaty Biscuits

Our neighbours gave us a bag of fresh macadamia nuts which initially tested our nut identification as we wisely told the kids they were hazelnuts.  Annabelle described the taste as a mixture of nuts and white chocolate, a perfect description of the creamy macadamia, I thought.

Macadamia nuts

Gymkhana preparations wouldn’t be quite the same without at least one dog and one goat jumping, staring and generally getting tangled up in everything.


I have been reading Broadsheet Melbourne Food .  This neat little book feels like a mini holiday in Melbourne, taking in all of the best bits, minus the flights.  It also has some handy seasonal notes, tips and stories from Melbourne foodies.

Also in my reading pile is Sticky Fingers Green Thumb cookbook .  This pretty book is a perfect combination of baking and growing food.  It also includes some really solid, practical baking tips.

So there it is, a little from my days and thoughts lately.

How about you?

What are you reading or baking or discovering?  Gymkhanas perhaps?

Happy Sunday, friends x

August 5, 2018
September 2, 2018


  1. Reply


    August 19, 2018

    Just hoping you all get some much needed RAIN real sooooon Jane …

    Thanks always for the delightful insight to country life ..

    Best wishes from

    • Reply

      Jane S

      August 26, 2018

      Thank you Toph, nice to hear form you.

  2. Reply

    Robert Richey

    August 19, 2018

    Another greeting from Thailand.
    We enjoy your posts and photos.
    We will send some of our “excess” rain ! ! !

    • Reply

      Jane S

      August 26, 2018

      Thank you for calling in!

  3. Reply

    Anne Bartholomaeus

    August 19, 2018

    I loved the Sunday walk around your garden Jane. I am feeling the need for a bit of garden therapy too. It’s been far too long! Ax

    • Reply

      Jane S

      August 19, 2018

      Thanks Annie, you can probably guess where those succulents came from! x

  4. Reply


    August 20, 2018

    I didn’t realise that’s what macadamia nuts look like. Do you have to rub off the brown skin? They look delicious. I’ve been baking a very traditional Victoria sandwich over the weekend and filling it with freshly made raspberry jam.

    It’s the random moments of happiness and small discoveries that keep us all smiling and it’s good to record them, especially with food searching animals around 🙂

    • Reply

      Jane S

      August 26, 2018

      Yes Anne, the macadamias were delicious and we were sorry that we didn’t have more of them. They are quite expensive to buy in Australia. The outer shell snaps off easily but the inner, brown shell is incredibly hard. They really do take some breaking into! Your baking sounds delicious, it is the traditional recipes that are the often the best.

  5. Reply


    August 21, 2018

    I look forward to following the blogs you mentioned Jane. I am a long time fan of hugo and elsa and my daughter bought me ‘a table in the orchard’ a few years ago for my birthday…so many clever people out there. Sue x

    • Reply

      Jane S

      August 26, 2018

      Thank you for calling in Sue. x