Buttons and bread

Buttons

Buttons are small daily objects that quietly connect things. They join things up, they hold us together. This blog features buttons as a way of reminding us of the little things that lie behind the actions we take to build strong communities.

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The other part of this blog’s title represents the nourishment we get from participating in community life and that we can offer to others also. It is not the nourishment of the exotic, but the everyday sustenance of regular connections, ongoing work and play – bread rather than caviar.

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Making pots, attracting bees

This year CHO has a theme of ‘bees’ and recently we got a community grant from Council to make planter pots for home and community gardens within which we can grow plants that attract the little honey-producing darlings. I went along, and had a great time. There were about 10 of us there, and it was such fun playing around with clay and learning how to build a pot. Connie, who led the session, has appeared in these pages before. I got off the track and forgot to take any photos, so I am putting up some pics from the internet to give a bit of a flavour of what we got up to.

Now, just for a laugh, here are some beautiful finished pots from the internet also – ours will no doubt not be massively like these! (I’ve mostly chosen photos of raku pots. We have been using raku clay today.)

 

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Outside the fence

Spring is here and there are flowers blooming everywhere. I went for a walk the other morning and was struck by how many people have planted on the verges or by the footpaths outside their front gates (or side gates). Mostly they are unprepossessing, hardy plants, but at this time of the year even the most ‘ordinary’ are coming into their own. It seems such a generous, cheerful, neighbourly gesture, and I am really enjoying the results.

Here is a selection of what I came across…

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Waste not…

 

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Pete from Peat’s Soils based at Willunga

I just saw a fantastic segment on Landline, the show that features items about agriculture in all its forms, and which is on tv every Sunday – it featured a local guy who runs a composting and soil firm, and showed how he is involved in every aspect of recycling biological waste to run his business. Not only turning all sorts of plant and animal waste into compost, but also turning waste and dirty grease from restaurants etc, into bio-fuel, and even growing plants to turn into ethanol so that it can be part of that process of running the trucks with bio-fuel to carry the waste or soil. As the program says, Pete, from Peat’s Soils, is a real ideas man. Amazing!

Here’s the clip from the show

(But be careful as it contains images of dead animals)

 

 

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Getting some z’s on Father’s Day

I went to Auburn today and did my usual thing of cooking for the fortnight for dad, and spending some time with him. We went for a walk later in the day, and did the chooks, and watched a bit of telly, and had a few laughs and he was my assistant in the kitchen also. It was good to see him and to catch him out in this common pose, asleep in the chair after lunch. Also common for the cat to be beside him, curled up on the comfortable chair. I feel very grateful to have the chance to spend time with him and that I have had the opportunity, courtesy of his long life, to get to know him more deeply in these past 10 or 15 years. He’s a terrific person and I’m a lucky woman!

Happy Father’s Day dadda!

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Kindness and ‘dear ones’ at the market

Readers of this blog will know that I regularly go to the farmers’ market on Sunday mornings. It is citrus fruit season at the moment, and each week I pick up my oranges, grapefruit and other fruit from the lovely Soula and Bill, growers from Loxton. They are the kindest folk, and have the most delicious fruit. Oranges etc in winter, and fantastic stone fruit in summer. Their fruit tastes more like the fruit from home grown trees than any other ‘bought’ fruit I’ve ever had. They are also generous, and are always giving people extra bits of this and that. Often when I am at the market I am on my way up to Auburn – they ask after dad every week, and when they knew he had been unwell recently, sent home a bag of mandarins for him (which he loves). I took them a dozen of his eggs this morning that he sent back in exchange.

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Cara Cara oranges

One of their ‘specialities’ is the Cara Cara orange – a red fleshed naval that is really delicious. It came from South America originally, from a place called Cara Cara, but I note that Cara means ‘dear one’ in Italian. Bill and Soula (their Greek heritage notwithstanding) are definitely dear ones, generous ones, and their warm-heartedness makes going to the market a treat in more ways than the obvious.

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Misty Morning

For many years I have been walking twice a week with my friend Kaye. One morning we leave from her place and walk through the park and along the old ‘creek’ (now more of a drain) in a circuit and then back. We used to go with Jackie the dog, who some people might recall from this blog. Another morning we leave from my place and walk along the beach. I took my camera the other day when we walked at Marion (Kaye’s suburb) – you can see how lovely it was on this wintry misty morning…

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Adventures in Bogland

On Friday evening I had an invitation to join my friend’s son Fynn’s birthday party at Kuitpo forest.

(The above photos (click to enlarge) are from the internet, thanks to those who took them. I didn’t take any photos on the night…)

The party ran from 4 pm to 7 pm, and I couldn’t go until after work. It’s a bit of a drive away, so by the time I got to Brookman Road it was getting late. I drove all down the road and back and up and down, and I just couldn’t find the Woodman’s cottage or the balloons or any sign of the party. It was getting dark by this time, and I thought that if I didn’t find them on one last look, I would go back to their place, assuming they would have gone home by then. I tried going down a side road, but soon realised that it wasn’t the right place, and turned around to go back to the main road – and got bogged. Of course it’s rained a bit, especially in the hills, and it was all wet and muddy on the side of the road.

(Photos of bogged cars from the internet, just to give you a flavour. I wasn’t in quite such a dire situation as the people and cars above, but I might as well have been!)

It was pretty obvious that I wouldn’t get out by myself, so I had to go and find some help. I headed off from the car – it was really dark at this stage, and I headed back to the main road. The sky was beautiful.

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(A picture of the southern sky, again from the internet)

Cars went past quite regularly, their lights were very bright, and the speed seemed fast in the dark. I walked up the road towards the intersection to begin with, but I felt it was so dark that I was in danger of falling, and possibly would be in danger a bit from the cars, who wouldn’t have been able to see me well either. I thought I had a torch in the car, so went back and found it, and also got a bit better lie of the land by taking that time.

(Evocative paintings by Camilla Tadich of car lights on darkening roads. It was quite like this, but a bit darker, on Friday night)

I could see that there were some houses in the other direction from the intersection, so thought that was probably the best way to go – to the nearest house, which was on the other side of the road, and not far away. Of course I felt a bit stupid and embarrassed and anxious about it all, but what can you do!

Anyway, I knocked on the door to the house, which was set a bit away from the road, and I could see that there were people there, someone watching telly, someone else doing the dishes. Roger, who was doing the dishes, came to the door, and I explained my situation. Roger immediately started putting his boots on to come and help. He is a carpenter and had a big work truck parked outside, and he cleared out the front seat so I could get in, unhooked the trailer from the back of it, and we went off, leaving his partner to finish the dishes (sorry about that Nina!).

It was all very easy and quick once we got to the car – Roger had a length of  tape/rope that he put around the tow bar of his truck and hooked underneath the back of my car and we were out in a flash. It was so fantastic to have such an easy, kind, helpful response – which is what commonly happens when trouble strikes, but which is easy to forget when so often what we hear is of trouble and danger from strangers.

So, in relatively short time I was back on the road, and called on my pals at home, before the birthday boy went to bed!

 

 

 

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