6 Dec 2014

Probationary blog period??

Gosh I seem to have forgotten to keep my blog updated while I am on my probationary period at my new job in a new area!

For those of you who follow me on Facebook you may know some of the day to day dramas but as I'm not going to be posting photos much on fb, with their new "we own everything and we can do as we want with it" attitude come 2015, then this is where the pictures will be. To that end I will need to find a way to make my mobile and my camera play nice with this old relic of a laptop, and it's OS, until I can afford to buy a new one.

So glad you are all so patient with me as split shifts and early morning starts (6am-9am) combined with evening finishes (3.30pm-7.00pm) sort of messes with the little grey cells.....not to mention the physical capabilities one has on weird sleep patterns. I'm on the Saturday morning roster in 2015 as well - one on, two off - but will enjoy the extra money that will come from it. Don't think I've ever been paid time and a half in my life but it's a shame about the extra tax that I will have to pay on it! Lol, that means less Saturday morning sleep-ins but I'm grateful that I'm still able to work like this and have a boss who recognises that at 51, and 52 when I'm working Saturdays, I'm better at it than someone half - or less - my age because I can see what needs doing and also time manage effectively to have it done.

Anyway, off to pop another tray of biscuits in the oven and sort the dressing for the potato salad for tomorrow's work Christmas party.

Hoping everyone is having, or is going to have, a great weekend :D!

Robyn XO

9 Sep 2014

Got it ,got it, got it!

Have transferred holding deposit, organised lease signing date, truck rental for the weekend, advised SO I will require his assistance, told DM my new address and let my future boss know I have accommodation and when I'll be moving. Still have gas/electricity to transfer, phone/internet to do and must advise local RE agents at current address in case Centrelink contact them. Must contact Jobsearch mob too as I won't be at their interview on Monday 15th September as I'll be doing my job induction. 

New pics in the future of my new digs :D!

Robyn XO

26 Aug 2014

Moving out....but not today!

Well, my last job was a job trial and as the hosing part with the "firehoses" was beyond my physical capabilities it didn't work out. I did have fun though and it made me much fitter, as well as paying a good income for the days I was there.

Between now and then I came across someone who kindly suggested my services to another employer in the cleaning business so after last Friday I am now looking for a rental house in Griffith NSW, as I start my new part-time permanent job in mid September, and SO's is too far to travel on a daily basis for work. I will be living a much easier travelling distance to his place though *cheesy grin* and there will be the opportunity of further employment hours in the future as one of the staff is going on pregnancy leave and the company wants to use the existing staff to the best advantage then.

BTW - anyone who reads this and owns, or knows someone who owns, a property in this area that will allow a cat and a dog and maybe has room for 3 horses - all farm animals so trained or useful in their own way - please leave a comment and I'll contact you.

Three moves in 10 months has made life interesting but on the flip side, life becomes better each time - one way or another :). I may be a bit backwards as most people take risks and have adventures in their early twenties but I was being safe then and now, at 51, I'm having the most interesting, exciting time of my life.....sometimes to the consternation of my adult children, but they were the reason I was playing it safe when I was younger!

Some more good news just interrupted my typing of this post. Some money that is owed to me finally looks like being paid. Not all at once, but I will receive it progressively over the next few months - just when I will need it.

I'm not a great believer in stars and readings, though I do find the Chinese signs are more accurate to what is happening in my life than the age of Aquarius stuff, so maybe my stars are deciding to shine favourably on me at the moment :D.

Then, maybe, I'm making a bit of my own luck as one's attitude can also determine one's fate and destiny *wink*.

Robyn xo

13 Aug 2014

Cows and Deere’s….hahahaha…

I started a new job on Monday at a commercial dairy farm. I learnt how to ride a quad bike Monday, attach 2 different trailers to it and tow them - one with the 1 and 2 day old calves in it - and was passenger in the 3 different John Deere tractors observing how to operate them. I also learnt how to put teat cups on cows for the automated milking, how to clean and store them afterwards and used huge hoses like fire hoses to spray the milking shed clean. The 2 “new” calves weren't very co-operative with their first hand feeding session, even though it was their mother’s milk they were being offered  out of a big feeding bottle. Rubber teats aren't quite the same as “mum’s”.

Yesterday I drove the smallest tractor, supervised, and took a bale of hay about the same size as my Nissan Pulsar sedan down to the dry cows. There are 4 steps into the cab of this tractor and it’s about 2 times the length of my car. If I'm allowed to take pics and post them, I will, as I can’t seem to find an online pic as the smallest (and also oldest) tractor is apparently 14 years old. I also shovelled pellets into the quad trailer and spread them in the feeding troughs in the dry cow paddock unsupervised. I’ll need to be a bit quicker unloading though as the cows heard/saw me coming and bolted over! Very difficult to shovel feed when there’s half a dozen fuzzy heads in the trailer and the rest are standing in/beside the ground level troughs. At least they aren't pushy or irritable in the paddock like Brahmans can be and even the biggest Friesian is only 2/3 the size of a Brahman. I haven’t found any kickers yet if you give them a poke to move them.

Spent part of yesterday afternoon helping replace old teat cups by cutting them out then wriggling the new ones into place. Milking was quicker this afternoon as I'm acquiring the knack of sorting out the odd problems that sets of teat cups have and keeping clear of cows with dancing feet. Some of them just rock from hoof to hoof when they hear their set of cups started, before you put them on, but then there are the ticklish ones, or the few heifers that aren't used to it yet, that will kick and swish their tails. Swishy tails makes it difficult to see where the cows teats are so you can put the cups on quickly and have your hands out of kicking range. Lol, I'm learning not to cup heifers but leave it to the 2 more experienced hands to do until I'm more used to it, and quicker, as I scored a bruised finger on Monday.

One thing this job is ensuring is that I have a good night’s sleep! My head hits the pillow and that’s it.

Danni, if having a job you love is indulging yourself - and also has the added bonuses of being with animals you like, earning you money, making you happy and keeping your mind occupied so you can’t dwell on depressing stuff – then I think I am spoiling myself. I also won’t become bored with it as it is seasonal work and will be finished in a couple of months.

Thinking a nomadic lifestyle of farm work might be the go for a few years but I’ll have to trade my “rice burner” for a vehicle I can sleep in if necessary. 

One has to have dreams.

Rob XO

P.S. Before anyone goes politically correct on MY  blog - “rice burner” is not an insult to the car, the makers or their nationality. It is a compliment to the fact that my current vehicle is cheap, economical and easy to use, reliable and therefore very frugal - just like rice!

11 Aug 2014


Had some tests done last week but further tests are scheduled for 2 September 2014. Hahaha.... the term heartbroken is freely thrown around but waiting for the CT scan and the results in 3 1/2 weeks caused a helluva reaction when this song started playing this morning.....

I can joke about bucket lists and keep a straight face but to tell the truth I don't fancy "living" the freedom I've recently gained on pills and doctor's appointments cause that's not's just hanging on. Think I'll research where I can skydive and hang glide around here. Bull riding won't figure in my bucket list as I've broken in horses :).

Robyn xo

20 Jul 2014

Nice and crispy and -3C!!

Good morning all!

SO(significant other) was up before the sun, possibly before the sparrows too as there didn't seem to be any around....probably had their feet frozen to the branches, poor little things! He did complain that "It's bloody cold here!" as he dressed. I languished in bed for another 20 minutes, by which time he'd had a coffee and was gone to attend to business. He doesn't muck around when there is something that needs doing.

I had a warming cup of tea, logged into the computer, checked emails and then decided it was too good a chance to miss so I found my backbone, and my camera, threw on a jacket and went outside around 7am to indulge in another hobby I've neglected.

This was my reward.

My car on the front sidewalk. Ice on the windscreen is about 6mm(1/4") thick!

Some weeds in the front yard.

The back yard didn't seem as frosty.

Lid of the 44 gallon horse feed drum. I nearly deleted this on the camera as I didn't think it was clear and the automatic shutter speed was only 80 with an f-stop of 3.2. When I viewed it on the computer though the blurry foreground was redeemed by the clear mid and back ground :). This is not a usual thing with this camera and in the future I'll think twice before deleting directly from the camera! Lol, one never stops learning :)

The raised frosted number on the lid of the 44 took my fancy too. It's like it's embossed in a different finish to the rest :).

The consolation to freezing mornings of the frosty type usually means a warm(ish) fine day. Hoping all my followers are having a grand weekend with lots of things to make them smile!

Robyn xo

15 Jul 2014



I've been a bit down in the dumps lately and didn't feel like blogging as I thought I had nothing interesting to say, apart from my health and fitness needing monitoring, which can be boring to others. I also have another blog for that!

Since I've moved I haven't made any new friends, the gardening possibilities are limited, it's a bit cold to craft, I haven't found any groups to join that interest me and finances are.....well I'd rather not say as it would include expletives as would the employment finding dramas!

Then I realised I had been neglecting friends who'd been there all along but with moving, bad internet and personal stuff I'd let the communications from my end stop.

So this week I've begun reconnecting with those who've given me great ideas, who think in a similar way to me and/or live a similar lifestyle (or the lifestyle I'm aiming for), who make me think and who've given me a laugh, or hope, when I'm feeling life isn't being fair.

It doesn't matter about the distances between us or the fact that we haven't met in person, it's just knowing that there are friends who share my interests, That will praise, congratulate, comfort, enquire and even chide if they feel it is necessary - all in good humour - with whatever I post.

This is a thank-you to all my blogging "pen-friends" who help me realise that life is what you make it. That there's highs to balance the lows and that positives can be found even in the most negative experience. To be grateful for what you have not what you'd like.

Robyn xo

12 Jul 2014

Blogging elsewhere

I've had an interesting month with job searching, medical appointments and the cold weather that is preventing me from doing a lot of crafting. I really don't want to bore anyone with my daily tasks and I haven't done anything or been anywhere interesting lately.

At the moment my health needs attention and I am the only one who can rectify this if I don't want to end up on more medications.

So this month, hopefully on a daily basis, I will be posting my progress on my efforts on another blog of mine.

Feel free to visit and either cheer me (not too much or I could slack off) or chide me if I become too casual about it (more than likely at some stage :P). Keeping motivated to keep moving and keep monitoring can be a trial on your own, even if it is in our best interests, and critical comments are still social encounters - especially when delivered by friends.

As I like photos on blogs I'll leave you with a sunrise I managed to capture at SO's last month when I woke up freezing cold as he'd stolen all the blankets! At least this made it worth braving the chill and because I'd woken him up jumping up to dress, and grab my camera, I scored a nice hot cuppa and toast when I returned inside.

Click to view larger.

Robyn xo

9 Jun 2014

Gardening and Crafts

I've been a bit busy over the last few weeks as I was involved in an online craft swap, had gardens to prepare and plant, did some cutting out of items I need to sew AND found myself a part time cleaning job :D! I've started baking my own bread again and am slowly stocking up the freezer but you've already seen plenty of pictures of cooking in the past so I won't bore you with those. Oh, I bought myself one machine whilst looking for a completely different type of machine *roll eyes*. Mi bad!!

As there's been a lot of typing going on with other interests and job applications I thought I'd just do a bit of a photo journal this post - with captions.


The peas and carrots are progressing.

Strip garden at front of house is planted to dwarf kale and rocket (roquette/arugula).

The garlic has popped up and the extra kale is potted.


The DTE "Learn a new skill Swap".

 My swappee, Alison's, gift to me. Two knitted cotton dishcloths, a blue one with my initial on it and a white one with a horse head on it; 3 lovely cocoa soaps; a tub of body butter and a sinus stick.

My gifts to Alison.
A cut out card.

The outside of a stand-up card. 
Inside of above card.

A pop-up card.

Inside of above card.

 A shaker card.

 Inside of above card.

Machine Purchase

This is the machine I bought for $100, hardly used......when I was supposed to be looking for a whipper snipper to help tame the garden!

These are the accessories, besides the foot pedal and protection case, that came with it.
The photos of the items I have cut out will have to wait as I need to sew them together first!

Hope everyone is enjoying their cooking, crafts and gardening :D!

Rob XO

20 May 2014

Riverina DTE get together

Yesterday I travelled down to Rutherglen with Karyn and Matti to meet with other “locals” who are members of the DTE forums. It was all very exciting meeting people in person who you’d been talking to online for weeks/months/years. There was a total of 8 adults and one cute little addition :).

These are a few of the items some of us brought to swap.

There were also handmade cards, a plastic bag holder and fresh free range eggs. 

We had a lovely lunch and a big chat – I think the cafĂ© people were starting to wonder if they’d ever be rid of us! A few of us went for a little look around the town afterwards before returning home.

Members of the forums will find a photo of the attendees and their names on this thread at the DTE forums.

Robyn xo

10 May 2014

New Gardening Techniques

I've been a bit busy lately but now I finally have something worth blogging about.

Due to the problems with making gardens where I now live I've decided to try Micro Gardening and growing Microgreens. I scored a few bargains along the way to achieving this.

These cost me $20 all together. Not sure what I'll do with the seed distributor as I don't have a paddock to hand sow but eventually I'll have a gardenhose to use the attachments with. There's a perforation in the base of the wheelbarrow but I'll ask SO can he repair it for me. Handy him being a welder by trade :)! I bought some linseed oil for the tool handles too.

 Above: The cress seed microgreens when I sowed them - 30April. The container on the right ended up in the compost as I left the cover on it but it had a thin covering of compost sprinkled over the seeds which became mouldy. The one on the left only had a covering of potting mix.
Below: The remaining container a week later - 7 May.Sorry for the blurry photo but it was taken indoors on an overcast day.

Above: The Micro Garden with dwarf peas and baby carrots at the eastern front corner of the house.
Below: I'm classing the stawberry strip at the front of the house as a micro garden because it's about a 1/4 of the size of one I used to have!

Above: A barrowful of old mangey geraniums and weeds that I cleared.
Below: A future micro garden. The objects scattered across it are mandarin peels to keep my cat, and other local cats, from doing their "business" there. Thanks Karyn, the citrus peel deterrent really works :D! This garden will be planted with snow peas and probably a row of baby carrots in front. More work still needs to be done on it.

Thanks everyone for tolerating my infrequent posting. I'm still developing routines here and I've had computer troubles so can't access photos and other information.

Happy Gardening,
Robyn XO

12 Mar 2014

Nearly back in the saddle...

Well, sometimes things go arse up on you when you least expect it. Sometimes it's meant to happen that way as it gives you a new appreciation of life when it feels like you've been given another serve of what your horse did previously.

I've had an interesting 5 months where I've travelled from the north coast to the Riverina of NSW and settled into a rental house.

For the first 2 months I lived out of various places - pubs, youth hostels, my car. As I wasn't disabled, dependent on drugs, a recently separated mother and had no intention of staying in the Sydney area the Dept of Housing didn't want to know me. I was homeless unless you count sleeping in a car you own, in a council park by a river when you have used all available funds and are waiting on the next unemployment payment,  a kind of home. I was back in the area I grew up in so the river and surrounds were familiar. Being homeless turned out to be a new experience though. Homeless doesn't mean hopeless, stupid or poor. Some of us are just a bit broke sometimes :P.

I'm now back in the town I lived in 25 years ago....where I bought my first house, where I started raising my eldest 2 kids. It's a bit bigger now but the people are still just as friendly and the countryside looks much the same.

My cast is off, I'm doing physiotherapy and I should be able to ride my horse, hopefully, at the end of March. I was fortunate enough to be able to bring my best friends, the horses, dog and cat with me. Can't wait to throw a saddle on my horse, take the dog and go for a ride then have a hot shower afterwards and curl up in bed with a book and my cat. It's not quite the same without riding the horse.