We had a really good break touring Victoria to parts we'd never been before and visiting family, towing our old caravan and "freedom camping" whenever possible. We have set up our van to suit the way we like to travel. Some solar panels on the roof generate enough power to run the 12 volt lights. The water tank capacity allows enough water for three days of washing, bucket bathing and cooking. A wee bucket is stowed just in case there are no sizable trees to hide behind.
This kind of caravanning doesn't suit everyone but we love the freedom of camping in some of the country's most picturesque locations, and love it even more if there are no other people around.
I'm afraid to say that not all "freedom campers" appreciate what we have here in this country and they show it by littering the countryside with used toilet paper and rubbish.
We are pedantic about leaving nothing behind but our tyre tracks and footprints. Oh, and the occasional fertilizing of the trees, but always well buried. Toilet paper is always carried away with us and disposed of at the nearest rubbish bin on our travels.
After three nights of freedom camping we generally find a nice quiet caravan park to spend a night where we can recharge the batteries, fill up the water tank and enjoy the showers.
There's no place like home! How lovely it is to return home to find everything in such good shape. Our two young men did a fine job of caring for the garden and animals and we couldn't be more grateful to them for giving us the opportunity to get away for short breaks occasionally.
We time our holiday breaks during off peak times here at the farm. The cows are all dried off, lambing has finished, and all the basic chores can be done in a couple of hours each day.
Both of us have another week of holidays to catch up on all the tasks that need doing here before returning to work.
Taking time out is such a regenerating thing to do for body, mind and soul and we both feel re-energized and so very keen to get stuck into the next round of the year.
Visits to both of my sister's gardens while in Victoria left us feeling rather envious of the rainfall they enjoy and the luscious growth of both their vegetable and decorative gardens.
They have none of the challenges we face here... dry conditions, frosts, earwigs..!! Regardless of that, my two sisters are incredibly skilled gardeners with extremely green thumbs and beautiful gardens that are a credit to their hard work.
My garden is bearing up well with little rainfall.
We've moved the sheep into new paddocks and have done lots of tidying up around the yards and gardens. After two weeks away there was plenty to do.
This garden needs cleaning up and will be planted up with vegetables in the next few days.
One little surprise we weren't expecting was lambs.! The ewes we purchased a few weeks ago were not supposed to be pregnant and we had planned on putting them with a ram in January. This would have them lambing in May-June when the grass is plentiful. A phone call from the boys while we were away surprised us with the news of twins born followed by another lamb a few days later.
There are no signs of any more lambs and we can only assume that a rogue ram jumped the fence and partied with a few of the ewes before they were taken to market.
As the ewes are currently on some of the other land we have access to, we've brought home the two mothers with their lambs so they can be protected by the alpacas who are presently here on our home block. The little lambs are pretty gorgeous and we've been enjoying our morning tea breaks on the verandah overlooking their paddock.
I never tire of watching the alpacas protecting the sheep and lambs so carefully. They appear to be in a constant state of alertness and every little noise or movement has them curiously checking the scene and guarding their flock. They are truly worth their weight in gold. Well, in fat lambs actually.
Lambing season was always fraught with nervous stress before we bought our first two alpacas quite a few years ago. We would bring the ewes close to the house every night and we'd be out of bed with torches and gun numerous times every night. Such are the dangers of foxes here. The foxes would take lambs at any chance they had, even in broad daylight. The alpacas have allowed us to breathe easy with the confidence that they are on the lookout at all times.
Nothing gets past these nosy and curious animals.
Being happy about being at home is a sure sign that all is right within my world and I have no desire to go outside these gates until I really need to or when it's time to return to work.
There is so much to do and to look forward to.
Thanks for visiting and special thanks to those who leave a comment. Blogging is great fun and a lovely way of connecting with my family and friends, but at times there's just so much to do and not enough time or clear mindedness to write a blog. Comments are wonderful to receive and apologies to those whose comments I don't get to answer quickly.
I'm also always interested to hear how you manage things around your home, yard & property.
If you're going on holidays, bon voyage and happy journeying...
If you've just returned from holidays or time away from home I hope you're enjoying the reacquainting to your own personal space and pace.