Launching Into 2019


Hello friends.  Here we are in 2019, amazing it?  The Christmas mess, presents and ham have well and truly gone leaving us with long days mostly spent at home, managing the heat and caring for our animals and our plants.

As New Year’s Eve crept up on us we deliberated about going to a special engagement party we were invited to.  We watched the weather forecast hourly and wondered if making the long trip to the Hay Plains would be practical.  Eventually we packed our swags and party clothes and headed east for a sparkly celebration.  It reminded me of the parties we went to when I was growing up, where the kids disappeared for hours and well dressed, capable country women all produced glorious food from various eskys to contribute to the feast.

New Year 2019

After a few hours sleep I captured the first fierce sunrise for 2019 as it appeared over the shearer’s huts.   It was a reassuring way to start the year surrounded by family and friends.

Hays Plains sunrise

Summer always means working with the weather so when the temperature dropped suddenly from 45°C to 25°C last weekend we jumped into some necessary sheep work. There is a certain momentum that sheep work requires and these days are some of my favourites, especially now that our kids are becoming so capable and involved.



I won’t be picking buckets of tomatoes this year but I am picking enough to slice up on sourdough focaccia and add to salads. This year they have been very slow to ripen but it has been worth the wait.  I couldn’t write anything about tomatoes that hasn’t already been written but picking them in the cool of the morning is a joy that I will never tire of.

Tomatoes and bread

Our big kitchen table accommodates many activities on these summer afternoons including book work, meals, Lego and all sorts of crafts and books.  The latest chapter is leather work.  Since Christmas there has been a constant production line of simple belts, pouches, wallets and all sorts of the stamping and cutting.  Using off-cuts from our local saddlery shop these affordable pieces have provided hours of entertainment and the constant hammering, tapping and stamping has become a comforting soundtrack for summer.

Leather work

I haven’t made any rash resolutions for 2019 but I am working on some new projects that will take me to new places and hopefully create new connections.  There will be a new school to embrace and an unexpected overseas adventure.  There will be a big family wedding and with any luck, a drought breaking rain.

How about you?

How are things looking for 2019?

Happy Sunday, friends x

December 23, 2018


  1. Reply


    January 13, 2019

    Sounds as though you have an exciting year ahead Jane and that it’s off to a good start. Just the thought of doing anything in 45C heat leaves me feeling faint so I imagine that the drop to 25 must have been very welcome. Fingers crossed that you get your drought breaking rain. Anne x

    • Reply

      Jane S

      January 15, 2019

      It is making me feel faint too Anne, 45C forecast for the rest of the week! It is lucky we love where we live…

  2. Reply

    Kate B

    January 13, 2019

    Sounds like there are some adventures and things to look forwards to for 2019 Jane. Good luck for the next few weeks of new starts xxx

    • Reply

      Jane S

      January 15, 2019

      Thanks Kate, enjoy what is left of the holidays and stay cool x

  3. Reply


    January 14, 2019

    Oooo an exciting year this year for you and your family 🙂

    We have 3 weddings already booked up for 2019 and I’m a bridesmaid for two so an exciting year for me too! Also hoping to plan a road trip holiday with the hubby – Fraser Island or maybe South somewhere… Oh and to finish at least one of my craft-y projects 🙂 x

    • Reply

      Jane S

      January 15, 2019

      Oh 3 weddings and 2 bridesmaid duties, how exciting Dani. I do love a wedding!

  4. Reply


    January 14, 2019

    Sounds like your 2019 has a rhythm already. Here’s to drought-breaking rain, but I guess I know the forecast as well as you do. I was north of Adelaide for the weekend, chewing on dust with about 10,000 Scouts. Don’t know how you do it.
    So keen to hear more about these new projects of yours, and i must go and hunt a recipe for focaccia – is there one on your blog, I’ll go looking.

  5. Reply


    January 18, 2019

    My father has returned to leatherwork. He sold the farm 18 months ago, he is 80 years old. He used to make western saddles as a hobby in the seventies, and my brother took the saddlery business over. My brother passed away in 1999 and the leather work shop has been sitting in the farm shed for 15 years. He has spent the last 8 months putting the 6 sewing machines back in working order. It has been wonderful, he has found a purpose and when I speak to him on the phone his voice has changed …. he seems so … uplifted, excited. He made a belt for me and I received it in the post this week. He had come to Melbourne to source leather from his supplier from the seventies (!), it is beautiful. I can’t take it off, I am wearing it with skirts, shorts anything! Thank you for sharing your New Year. I hope we all have a fantastic 2019 🙂

  6. Reply

    Jane S

    January 27, 2019

    What a beautiful story Alison, thank you for sharing. It is a fascinating hobby/craft isn’t it? We have inherited a toolbox full of leather work gear from my husband’s grandfather. It is very special to now see our children making use of it. Your belt sounds perfect.