California (and Other Places) Dreamin’

While I am not one who enjoys maths/math (depending on where you are geographically) and numbers generally “do my head in”, I enjoy hearing a stat or two when others have done the cerebral work and lately the Homestead number-crunchers have been having a field day.

Generally, these reckonings revolve around our upcoming adventure and, bearing last week’s blog subject in mind, I won’t bore you all too much except to say that in four months, six days we will be marching (and probably bickering) briskly around the Auckland International Airport environs in an attempt to encourage our overexcited selves to sleep away our upcoming 12ish hour flight. I can also tell you that five months from today we will be in Newcastle Upon Tyne and in six months we will have been home for nearly 24 hours; it doesn’t seem that long ago we were saying “this time next year”…


In the garden, we are now planning and planting for after it’s all done and dusted. Not that the snails appreciate that; Anything is fair game to them, including our tender brassica seedlings, and so the snail traps have been unearthed and are back in place. It’s a labour-intensive way to control these guzzling gastropods but if you enjoy making a duck smile


(and we do) it has rewards far beyond future coleslaw and lazy cauliflower- cheese-in-front-of-the-TV evenings.


There’s been an increase in this form of Homestead entertainment of late in the interests of economising in order to boost other country’s economies. We’ve finished with Hart of Dixie, tried Nashville but got sick of their misery (and inability to avoid making the same mistakes over and over and…) and have watched a great many movies – some awesome and some not so – oh, the compromises we have made (Harry Potter for starters). Then, by happy chance we stumbled upon the Kilcher family and Alaska: The Last Frontier.  At last! A family that yells, laughs, fights, and loves as we do. Now, that’s what we on the Homestead call entertainment.


Luckily, there have been some outings to remind us there is a world outside the front gates. Last Friday, we stacked ourselves neatly into the Cube and trundled up the motorway to the thriving metropolis of Rangiora to watch the family songbird, Jacq D, become Leisl  von Trapp.

Proud is an understatement; Bravo! Bravo! Bravo!

So, as the Homestead evenings draw in, you’ll find us in front of the fire – and the TV – keeping warm, often yakking up a storm with the pause button on, hearing the latest number-cruncher’s discovery, and dreaming about our adventure.


10 thoughts on “California (and Other Places) Dreamin’

  1. Snail trap? For slugs, we have used beer…with mixed success, which frankly makes it a complete waste of beer. What do you use for snails?
    In half a year your trip will be completed – (the student teacher among us is teaching fractions just now), wow. Your stats do make it seem imminent. What an adventure it’s going to be.
    I get that you’re economising, so you may have to wait till the library gets it as a DVD, but there is a movie coming out(or may be out already) in your neck of the woods called “Pecking Order”. The trailer looks like reality tv meets chickens and is based in Christchurch.

    • Yes, we tried the beer thing too and found it to be pretty useless, especially as I am such a messy gardener the traps became gunged up with beer-soaked earth which really played into the slugs and snails hands…or whatever they have.
      Fractions are fun; hope the student teacher is including food in her lesson…sure way this “student’s” heart and head anyway 🙂
      Yes, Pecking Order is definitely on the list especially as Princess Nikita has either sold to or bought from many of the “stars”.
      Hope all is good in your neck of the woods.

      • Funnily enough, an American movie called “Chicken People” came out earlier this year – much the same topic, but no club action – more just following 4 competitors. Pecking Order looks a bit more fun.
        How cool that PN has connections!
        The fractions did involve pizza at one point. She moved onto simple machines this week, and I got to help construct an Archimedes screw (pool noodle and clear plastic hose, a lot of tape and a bucket of water) – I had never heard of them before, and I think they’re magic, so to did her class apparently, though I suspect it had more to do with the fact that they could mess about with water in the classroom.
        All is OK here – I’ve been under a cloud healthwise for what seems like ages, but the specialist has finally shaken his head and told me he doesn’t want to see me anymore, and to go out there and live it up (OK, not quite his words) – I’m basically fine, just aging. Why isn’t there a magic pill for that?
        Family are OK. The student teacher had walking pneumonia near the beginning of her practicum and couldn’t stop teaching, so soldiered through – still a naggy cough but basically better now. Hubby is in his busy season, so I’m barely seeing him and number two daughter is ticking along.
        No pigs or meat chickens this year. I’ve drafted a post about that about 6 times and scrapped them all. I just can’t swing animal husbandry, working full time, family and this aging process thing all at one time. Something has to give. I’m not super happy about it, but it was the right decision.
        You asked :). Glad you keep blogging so I can keep up with you!

      • The Archimedes screw is awesome – so simply clever. Sorry to hear about your health hooha and the animals falling by the wayside but wonderful to get a full update of Sailors Small Farm happenings. Glad I asked and hi to all from all of us 🙂

  2. I love all your photos! I’m glad you’ve got number-crunchers because without them your trip could rush up on you and you might not be ready! I can’t see that happening though! 😀

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