Our Garden

Our garden is just full of surprises.  I've been trying so hard not to look at our veggies every single day.  We have had some rain over the last few days and I have managed to hold myself back from peaking until today.  

Cauliflower was the first one I had a little look at.  I carefully pulled a few leaves aside and was that excited by what I saw that I actually said out loud 'aaaaaah, we have cauliflower.'  I even startled poor Samson who was busy chewing away on his new bone.  

My very first cauliflower.

I keep looking at this photo and still can't believe my eyes.  It even looks like a cauliflower.  Not sure what I expected to see really.  Of course it will be a cauliflower I keep saying to myself.  Being a first timer with so many veggies and learning as I go I get so excited when something grows.

Picturing cauliflower in the fruit and veggie shop where I pick it up off the shelf and pay then seeing one in my own garden gives me such a great feeling of satisfaction.  Very soon I'll be able to walk straight past the cauliflower in the shop. 

The cabbage was next on my radar.  Getting close as the leaves in the centre almost look like little cabbages.  Visions of making sauerkraut and also pinatas for the chickens using my very own cabbages.

Broccoli was next and I was jumping for joy once again.  They're all growing at different stages which is perfect.  Broccoli is one of my favourite veggies. 

I keep staring at this picture - I grew that!

Next was the kale which is looking healthy and coming along.  I'll be snipping those leaves in no time at all.  I'm growing plenty of kale to share with the chickens.

By the time I left the veggie patch I had a huge smile and I'm still smiling.  Over to the garden bed on the shady side of the house.  This area had been left for years and was just full of weeds and old pots.  Being in such a shady area has made it difficult to grow plants.  Last year I visited the nursery and they recommended Hellebores.  Over the summer they were just twigs sticking out of the ground.  I perservered with them hoping they will bloom in the winter.  Although very slow a few started forming buds a few weeks ago.  Today I had a wonderful surprise.

Winter White.

My very first flower.  Hard to believe that over the warm months this plant looked like woody sticks poking out of the ground.  Bright green leaves slowly started to form and now it is flowering.  Such an accomplishment and another great feeling as this area is a difficult one.  I only planted a few of these as a trial however will now expand this garden bed with more Hellebores.

Further along is another Hellebore from the Winter Rose Collection.  More surprises as buds have formed.

Joy Bouquet
A little walk through our garden has left me with a huge smile, accomplishment, satisfaction and so much more.  I'm more than happy right now.  Growing things is amazing.

Ravioli Veggie Bake

Ravioli Veggie Bake is one of the kids all time favourites and one which I've made many times.  I found the recipe years ago on the Australian Healthy Food Guide site.

As I have made this dish more times than I can count I've worked out a few different ways of preparing the recipe to make life a little easier.

Ravioli Veggie Bake

Our Chickens First Freerange

Sunday was a big day for our girls.  Their very first time out of the run to forage, bathe and explore.  As this was their first time plus ours we only had them out for a few hours in the afternoon.  Bit of a taste test to see how we all go.

The second I opened the gate they were out all except little Annie.  I shouldn't laugh but as I opened the gate she was behind it whereas the others were right at the entrance.  Four chickens out and little Annie trying desperately to get around the gate.  She was going crazy trying to join the others.

....and they're off.  Come on Annie you can work it out.

Menu Plan 16th July - 22nd July

Once again I'm enjoying 'The Country' table cookbook however have also borrowed Julie Goodwin's Essential Cookbook from the library.

Sunday night I changed things up a little.  Instead of Spaghetti Bolognese we had Barbequed Lamb Chops with Mustard and Thyme Marinade from 'The Country Table' cookbook.  I marinated them in the morning and then grilled them later.  Very, very tasty.

Our daughter also made these Muesli Biscuits ready for back to school.

 Muesli Biscuits

Tangy Lemon Squares

Another recipe from my cookbook by the Australian Women's Weekly 'The Country Table.'  I am working my way through one of the sections in the book called 'See you at three'.  One of the recipes coming up is a sponge cake which could be a challenge.  It will be my first time making a sponge.  Mum makes a fantastic sponge so there is hope for me yet.  

Anyway getting ahead of myself.  Today is all about these Tangy Lemon Squares.

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