Change in the air

It has arrived .. winter that is. The weather has gone from gorgeous balmy autumn days to being bleak, windy, cold and wet. Did I say very wet?

muriwai stormy-1250207

We went to the beach the other day – the weather was so bad, we didn’t leave the vehicle, but instead watched the waves as they crashed on the shore and the kite surfers as they hammered up and down the beach obviously relishing the stormy conditions!

purple kite

Yellow kite

calling it a day-1250186

Time to call it a day

sparrow sitting on flax

I’m sitting here tapping away on the laptop and peering over my glasses as the sun is starting to leave us for the day.

I have a nice beef dish in the slow cooker with chilli, star anise and soy, rice vinegar, tomato and ginger – the aromas are divine. This is perfect tucker for damp days and a glass of Pinot Noir of course!

It has been interesting at Frog Pond Farm lately. Both the lads have been in hospital. Hubby had a shoulder reconstruction and has the joy of wearing a sling for 6 weeks, while Dan our pooch (he thinks he is human) underwent a major op to remove a massive growth from his liver. Thankfully both of them are on the road to recovery …

A big thanks to Ruth and her horticulture students who paid us a visit yesterday and pruned our feijoa trees! How lucky am I?

cloud magic-1250144

clouds on the way home-1250136

I have this thing about clouds …


… and beautiful scenery

fence at muriwai-1250216

…. and wood 😀

Happy gardening

80 thoughts

  1. I think you are very lucky and we too to look at all of the awesome photographs and reading your words. Good to see your post early in the morning. We have summer soon. I will not post any actual shots. Horrible weather. Enjoy your glass of wine … I will go for a cup of tea! Smiles. Reinhold

  2. Regards to Mr Bonner. Give him all my best and hope he is on the mend soon. Tell him the Yarra Valley is waiting for him.I think that tasty beef casserole should help cheer him up. Now to the photos- ho good are those wind surfer shots Miss J??? It might have been too cold to get out of the car, but hey, you still managed to tempt me with your wild beach.

    • Hey Francesca .. I sure will pass on your best to Andrew. 🙂 And I think a visit to the Yarra Valley would be super. Looking forward to our casserole and sitting in front of the fire. So you like the kite surfer pics? I stumbled out of the car for a minute but thought better of it! LOL … it sure was a wild day. Now when you get to Auckland it must be summer 😀

  3. Wishing your husband and Dan the pooch a speedy recovery. I am glad you had help with pruning. Good help is a godsend. All the best to you and your family, Julie.

    • Hey Lavinia … thank you I sure will pass on your best. I’m so pleased I had help with the pruning – they did an amazing job and one less for me! Help sure is godsend. Thanks for stopping by

  4. And there’ s no doubt about the arrival of winter down here, either. We seemed to go from bliss to bleak in less than a day. At least you have some beautiful photos out of the changeover. 😉 How often do you prune the feijoas?

  5. Thank goodness summer is setting in, at least in this part of the world. 😉
    Thanks for postings the beautiful photographs.

  6. You have captured the atmosphere at the beach really well. It is strange thinking of you with opposite seasons, mind you it can sometimes feel like winter here too in the middle of summer. Today is very windy, but not too cold I hope. I am off to play golf.

    • It is strange to me too, hearing people talk about summer as we launch into winter. Glad you like the beach shots .. never a dull moment down there. It is a coastal beach .. Glad it’s not cold where you are. Hope the golf went well 😉 Thanks for stopping by

    • Hey Lisa … thanks Miss. I spotted a wonderful fungi here under my lavender. Thought of you straight away 🙂 What about the weather? It wasn’t that long ago it was 23 degrees. Yep time for pruning! Yes thank you the boys are doing well .. 😀

  7. Those people are serious surfers. Great photos. We are getting warmer weather, full blooms and lots of critters.

    • Those surfers sure are serious. You should have seen them yesterday. They never cease to amaze me. Glad you like the pics Tim. Ah you enjoy that warm weather … looking forward to seeing all your super photos. Full blooms & critters – sure sounds like summer 😀

  8. Can there be anything nicer than a hearty beef stew and a glass of red wine on a blustery winter day. Sorry to hear about Andrew and Dan. I hope they are both on the mend. A bad shoulder can be a miserable injury. Lying in bed can even be painful. Give plenty of pats to Dan. Wishing them both a quick recovery. Wonderful, wonderful photos! The ocean looks gorgeous. Take care. Don’t worry about trying to do everything, it will get done. Bob

    • Hey Bob .. glad you enjoyed the photos! And I’ll pass on your best to the lads. Dan will love those pats. There is always loads to do, but it can wait it will eventually get done! That stew was brilliant by the way with home grown spuds!

  9. Your beach shots are great. Captured both the surfers determination to pursue their sport – weather be damned! – as well as the wet, cold and windy conditions. Like you, I would have remained in a nice, toasty warm vehicle as well, thank you very much!

    Our summer season is upon us just as winter heads your way. And so it goes… 🙂

    Happy day to you, Julie!!

    • Hey Julie … those surfers are amazing! They are so dedicated and a little bit nuts! I did clamber out but thought better of it … And so it goes winter with us and summer with you … looking forward to your photos! And a happy day to you too Miss 😀

  10. Hi Julie and Andrew well summer is on hold here. Left Jo,s in plenty of rain and wind did quite well until Dartford tunnel over thirty mins to get through. anyway your photos of Winter are just great. But I thought you might have got out of car. But no you’ve got to think about the wig blowing off! When I think of the gallons of water I used to put on those feijoas when they were first planted no wonder they grew to that size. How’s the cooking going or are you still eating the meals Andrew did before his op? I bet the slow cooker is on overdrive. Just kidding. Glad Dan is on the mend he looked good when Andrew showed me. Love to you both Bill xxx

    • Hi Bill .. your weather sounds much like ours, except that you are in summer now. Thirty minutes … no! Glad you like the pics Mr B, I did hop out of the car for a minute but could feel the wig lifting off so I jumped back in again (shame on you .. LOL) You do remember how big the feijoas had got? Well they have been given a wonderful hair cut and much needed. At least the birds will be able to fly through them now. And yes, I sure do remember you down there with the hose. Cooking going famously thanks … he is already helping! ha ha Dan is well and truly on the mend, it was only this time last week he was home on the drip. Love to you xx

  11. Oh your poor boys. I’m so glad they’re on the mend. It seems to have been the month for health issues for some reason. Good thing it’s all over now. Your supper sounds wonderful. I love the slow cooker. I use it almost constantly round here and usually to make a bone broth which is a staple in my house for soups and as stock, but last night there was a beautiful chili bubbling away. My mother is coming to stay with me for a few days and loves chili. She could eat it morning and night. I didn’t use beef though, (mainly because I rarely eat red meat and if I do I really want it to be some high quality, like a beautiful steak), I used some organic turkey. But it’s been simmering away all night with a handful of fresh herbs and now is so dark and rich and thick and beautiful that she will never be able to tell. So let’s not say anything. 😀 Big hugs to you and your boys. For you Miss Nightingale to be strong and supportive and for the boys for a speedy recovery. Tea and rest. That’s the recipe for me too round here. Yesterday I wrote in my Quo Vadis my mantra for the day: “What would someone who loves themselves do?” Rest. Rest and recover.

    • Hello lovely … always great to hear from you V. Yes they are both on the mend, thank heavens! How good are slow cookers? Wonderful things. How lovely to have your Mum come to stay – you must be missing Chloe. Ah, so she is a chilli fan – me too! I have been feeling like Miss Nightingale .. it was only a week ago that Dan was here at home on the drip. Thanks for those hugs V .. rest sounds like the remedy. 😀

  12. We share the same joys in clouds, wood, scenery! I’m so glad your boys are on the mend. That must leave all the work up to you. Don’t forget you must be the guard dog also!


  13. Lucky you to live so close to the beach which I think is beautiful in all seasons. I understand your fascination with clouds completely. I wish hubby and Dan a speedy recovery.

    • Hey Jan … I think the beach is beautiful too – no matter the seasons 🙂 I’ve always had a fascination for clouds – worse now that I can take photos of them. Hubby and Dan are getting better every day! Thanks for stopping by

    • Hey Meg … thank you. Dan is doing fabulously, amazing as last week he was on a drip! So pleased you like the pics .. I never tire of that beach and lug my camera down there all the time! Fun though 😀 you would love it

    • Hello Mr D … so good to hear from you. Glad you like the pics – was one of those days and the light wasn’t too good. I was fencing today – can you believe it? Nice to keep the neighbours cattle out of our property 😀 Those lads are doing just fine – thank you!

  14. Lovely colors in your winter. Thank you Julie. ^_^ They resemble Victorian (to my eyes) pieces of art for the tones and the sea. I share with you the love for clouds… I stare at yours with such longing and familiarity.
    Wish you a nice winter and a complete recovering of your family

  15. We may be on opposite sides of the earth but we’re sharing the rain. It’s thundering as I type and I can hear the rain but still can’t see it at this early morning hour. We don’t share the cold, of course.

  16. Gosh, what a superbe mood in your images, Julie, you’ve captured it perfectly. That dish sounds fascinating and I shall try it, I love cooking with exotic spices. My 4-legged babe is not well either, had a stick in her tendon yesterday and is now recovering in the sun on the terrace. Love to you all, take care 🙂

    • HI Miss! Dinner that night was superb! Yum … I too love cooking with exotic spices. Sorry to hear about your dog Annette .. in the sun on the terrace sounds like the place to be. Our pooch is so much better 😀 Lots of love back at you!

  17. I guess those kite surfers have found a way to fly – for a little while at least. Nice storm photos – reminds us how ultimately we’re at the mercy of the weather. Glad your boys are on the mend.

    • Oh I missed this comment .. sorry! Was a stormy day – much enjoyed by those kite surfers! We are so at the mercy of the weather and our beach has suffered serious erosion over the past 10 years. Shame … The boys are both really good! 🙂

  18. Great photos – so atmospheric – love very much the first one with the waves breaking over the dunes. Very best wishes to the men (human and other) in your life – hope you’re not left doing all the heavy work in the garden 🙂

  19. I would be relishing those conditions, as well. Awesome photos. What weather. I have a thing for clouds, gorgeous scenery and wood too- cannot get enough. Always thrilled to get a fix, here. 😉 So grateful both Dan and hubby are recovering. My wee one-eyed cat Annie Cinder has recently developed hyperthyroidism. Happily treatable. Hugs, all the best to you,

    Autumn Jade Toad

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