Life on the Farm After the Queensland Floods

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Sorry for the silence here of late! I’m afraid it’s been one drama after another here on our goat farm on the Darling Downs.

First were days of pouring rain and massive winds that sent leaves pelting our roof like massive drops of rain.

Then came the 2013 Queensland floods which wreaked havoc up and down the state and down through New South Wales.

Just as we started to dry out a bit from the floods another huge rain came through last night. Phew!

But today the sun came out in earnest and everything is perking up beautifully.

pink cosmos

My garden has stopped drooping under withering winds and is blossoming and producing again.

I’ve been collecting handfuls of tomatoes and they managed to emerge with only a few splits here and there.

chive blossoms

Our poor ducklings nearly died when their pens went from dry to flooded in just a short time. So Bear and I bundled up against the deluge and got them up out of the water and up into straw-lined dog kennels, making sure to wrap the soggiest ones in towels so they could warm up quicker.

We thought for sure that we’d lose some, but when we came to check on them the next morning, they were happy as can be, waddling through puddles and looking as though they hadn’t resembled drowned rats the night before.

We were SO relieved. 🙂

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Our new Pilgrim geese weren’t fazed in the slightest by the storm. In fact, they seemed to enjoy it! Strutting around in the maelstrom with the adult Muscovy ducks while all the other farm animals were hunkered down in shelters and pens.

female Pilgrim geese

We’re so glad that all our animals made it through the floods.

Today it was time to tackle the projects that we put off until the weather was better.

We donned wellies then slipped and slid our way to the paddocks. Working in at least six inches of thick black mud and the remaining flood waters, how we laughed as we nearly fell on our faces while wrangling goats. Finally we got the randy boys separated from the girls and joined up with the menfolk in the upper paddock.

Then we got all the ducklings moved into the pen with the grown-up Muscovy’s and they are happy as pigs in mud, toddling about in the big open space with two ponds for them to swim in.

Tonight we can bask in the knowledge of a job well done and collapse into bed knowing that everybody is safe and sound. It feels good. 🙂

Darling Downs farm

What is your latest project that you’re proud of?

Roses, Windmills and A Duck Egg Breakfast Sandwich

bowl of duck eggs

It is so good to be back after enduring an absolutely ghastly flu/cold combo thing that knocked me flat this Spring.

Yesterday evening I started to perk up and went for a stroll in my garden, so happy to find a whole bouquet of fragrant pink roses ready for cutting.

Robbie bought me the bush last week as a surprise, and I was so excited because they look and smell like the wild Alberta Roses I remember from my youth in Canada. They are especially dear to me.

hand holding pink roses

This week is a red letter week because we are getting our pump and windmill fixed! HOORAY!

Our farm is situated above an Artesian basin chock full of bore water ready for us to use. Alas the pipes connecting the water to our windmill rusted clean through and were useless. Tomorrow the Windmill Man is coming to get everything in ship shape order.

I am so excited I can hardly stand it. 🙂 At last we will have unlimited water for our animals, gardens, orchards and vineyard. And I will get a break from hauling endless buckets of water to parched goats, pups and birds. 🙂

windmill

Last week our beautiful Muscovy ducks started laying again and we have eight gorgeous Muscovy duck eggs ready to add to cakes, pies and our morning breakfasts.

One of the mamas has gone broody (yay!!) so hopefully we will have some cute little Muscovy ducklings wandering about in a month or so. 🙂

bowl of duck eggs

This morning I used Muscovy duck eggs to make scrumptious breakfast sandwiches.

I had some lovely and soft bacon and cheese rolls left over from dinner, so I buttered and grilled them, added sharp cheddar cheese and a couple of fried eggs and we were in business. So simple to make, yet absolutely delicious.

Next time I’m going to add caramelized onion jam, and perhaps some grainy mustard or roasted tomatoes. 🙂

duck egg breakfast sandwich

Have you ever eaten duck eggs before?

Duck Egg Breakfast Sandwiches
Serves two

Ingredients:

2 rolls (we like bacon and cheese rolls)
butter
2-3 duck eggs (one for a regular person, two for a starving one)
salt and pepper to taste
3-4 slices extra sharp cheddar cheese
optional additions: sweet onion jam, grainy mustard, roasted tomatoes, crispy bacon
Directions:

  1. Slice and butter rolls and place face down on hot griddle.
  2. Toast until golden brown then remove and top bottom layer with cheese. Add top part of bun and return to pan to keep warm.
  3. Fry duck eggs in a little butter with salt and pepper until done.
  4. Open rolls and add fried eggs. Close.
  5. Eat warm in the sunshine.