It's been ages since my last post and in that time we've shifted from summer to autumn. There've been some cold nights, and there was even a sprinkle of snow on the mountain before the end of February.
In the last week or two I've noticed a flush of yellow at the top of the gingko tree out my kitchen window. It reminds me that we're coming up to two years here in NZ. That flush of yellow was one of the first things I photographed when we arrived, with our toddler and our baby. The toddler is now in her last year of kindy, and the baby is in her first. The cycle goes on. And I love having the seasons to mark out the memories.
The longer we're here the more I can recognise the different seasons with my eyes closed. Summer is the ear-splitting zing of cicadas and the drone of tractors. In autumn it's the song of blackbirds and the sound of chainsaws. Spring is bees buzzing and the sound of chainsaws, and winter is the smell of woodsmoke and the sound of chainsaws.
It's also the changing angle of the sun coming into the house. Usually highlighting somewhere that I really need to vacuum.
The vegetable garden has passed its summer peak and we're in the process of changing over to winter crops. I don't want to see another zucchini for a really long time. I've already harvested my first head of broccoli. The beans are done (thank god) and I'll be pulling the vines down once this rain stops. The cherry tomatoes are ripening their last fruits and the carrot bed is almost empty.
The grape vine has a couple of tiny bunches which will hopefully ripen before it gets too cold. The lemon tree is dropping the remainder of last year's crop while the new green lemons start to swell. The hydrandeas in protected spots carry on giving.
I've filled the wood basket and set the fire in readiness but am proud to say I haven't lit it yet, despite some chilly mornings.
I picked up my needles and cast on a new knitting project for the first time since last winter.
The lawn is suddenly covered in fallen leaves which weren't there yesterday.
So that's where we are in almost-mid-March. Overall, happy. Just really happy and content. With the odd bout of sibling fisticuffs for good measure (more about that on another day I think).