The Last of March

The rains have come and I am grateful.

Mostly because the days are sunny and delightfully warm and those overnight showers or early morning drops are ideal for the young seedlings and newly planted trees. I have also been re-potting some of the trees and they are liking this extra fresh water.

It is also nice to hear the rain shower on the tin roof in the early morning. But not being one to sleep in I was up early anyway and working in the garage, out on the back verandah and under the house. I managed to do many small jobs today – like paint our street number out the front, sand and paint and old table and sow more seeds.

Then it was time for home school. Maths, spelling, music, reading, art,  on-line learning. Some further insights into the workings of young minds. What an experience this is, I think to myself. How frustrating and wonderful. All of it. Intriguing and frustrating and really trying on the patience. But intriguing. And of course, I am learning too.


We all sat at the kitchen table chatting about home schooling when Gran blurts out at the head of the table “Are they doing swimming?”

“No Mum. There is no swimming anyway. Not at the pool or the beach. Besides, the pools closed.”

We return to our lunch.

“It’s a good thing they’ve canceled swimming then!”

Little Fella Number One looks incredulously at his Gran and shakes his head. We all grin and nod. And eat our lunch.


Despite early attempts to whinge and whine in rebellion against the morning walk, this morning they were dressed and ready and Mrs PP took them to the beach in the drizzle. They had a great time chasing waves and even took me back in the afternoon with their boards to go in the waves again.

They have been hungry those Little Fellas, and I’ve been making up various dishes to show them what can be done with food and left-overs. Like the rice pudding with sultanas, lemon rind and nutmeg. Autumn, ahhhh. They learn the basics of cooking also. School never really stops at home. But we don’t tell them that to remind them.

rice pudding pp

Bullfrog has been pretty low key recently. He spends his days in and around the pond. He is dark now, like the saturated wood in the pond that he clings to. Soon it will be time for the Moaning Frog to start calling.

Finch has been perching on the uppermost branches of the neighbours hibiscus tree and calling a little courting call as he holds a long strand of freshly plucked grass in hi beak. He tends to alternate between the hibiscus and another tree further up the slope.

I’ve moved the native iris and geraniums that were pulled from the front garden up to the very back of the block to plant out. I just need to impede the growth of the kikuyu before I get them in the ground.

bananas pp

The bananas have grown remarkably well in the current weather cycle of hot, sunny days and cool, damp nights. I have been in the practice of putting other potted plants around the base of them on the mulch to keep everything easily watered but have limited this practice now as the diameter of the bananas stem is increasing a lot and the mulch is just so deliciously alive and attractive that any potted plant placed on top immediately decides to set roots deep into it. I have instead put in a few slips of sweet potato. I am fond of the leaves in salad, but if we get a small crop of tubers it will be a bonus.

So March departs and there is the promise of those glorious days of April and May. We shall see what they bring. The council workers ‘closed’ the park yesterday. They have removed swings, barricaded play areas and locked up fence areas in an effort to reduce the potential exchange of the virus. The beach is not busy, but that comes with the change of season anyway. So we go there. The fresh air, the cleansing water. People are usually happy there.

I am hoping. That when Moaning Frog begins his woeful, sad call in the weeks to come, that it is a celebration of the winter rains.




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