Friday, December 23, 2016

stacks of wood

Hello you guys!

It's Friday again and I almost can't believe it. Where did this week go? I feel like it was just yesterday or the day before that I was sitting here on the plump green chair writing my blog. And yet here I am again.

Honestly I almost skipped this week. This week was such a big physical week that there was no time or space left for the emotional. And truth be told, emotion is where the story always sits with me. But I do know that if I miss one week then it's probably all over and I'll possibly never come back. And it would have been such a shame to miss the fourth Foxs Lane Friday.

So although the stories are about doing rather than feeling, here they are.

Last Saturday Bob the tree man turned up bright and early to cut up a few trees that had come down in recent storms, and to cut down a few trees that were too close to the house.

Then with a rotating team of family we spent the next four days turning those trees into firewood.

First someone rolled the rounds close to and then up onto the hydraulic splitter. (I think Miss Pepper was actually drawing sap faces onto that round up above, but I didn't take all that many photos of the process and that one sort of gives you an idea).

Then someone split the rounds into chunks. Gosh it's cool to watch that big blade come down and slice through the wood as easily as if it were an apple. And the cracking sound was pretty cool too.

I must admit that one or two of us did get a bit emotional on occasion when the blade opened up a gash in the wood and deep red sap poured out. At times it looked a bit like a crime scene.

Of course there was a bit of old fashioned, analogue splitting too. Look at Bren's dad John go!

It was hot, heavy and loud work. I have scratches all over my hands and arms, and my shoulders ache. But gosh it's a great feeling to put in a few days of hard work and get the job done. To build those long winding walls of firewood that now line our driveway.

I loved spending the days with our girls and our parents working as a team. I loved watching Bob teach Indi to split wood, and for her to smash it. I loved knowing that Bob was listening to Simon and Garfunkel and First Aid Kit in his headphones and not the rock that I had assumed. Coming across koalas, and faces, and slides that Pepper had made out of  the sap and the wood was awesome. And let me tell you there is nothing that tastes quite as good as an iced coffee on a hot summer's morning after a few hours of solid work.

I'm not at all looking forward to those icy winter nights when we'll be burning through that wood, in fact I feel slightly melancholy at the thought that we're on the wrong wide of the summer solstice now, but I do feel pleased that we're prepared.

And I kinda like it when we're so exhausted come night time, that we end up in bed before the girls do.

After the wood, and the summer slashing and the rest of the farm chores, there wasn't much more week to fit farm work into, but we did squeeze in a bit of planting in the igloo my farmer boy built me after he found me crying at the thought of losing another crop to the birds and the animals.

It's made of star pickets, irrigation pipe and orchard netting, all of which we had lying around the place. Pretty cool hey!

We planted cabbages, broccoli, brussel sprouts, basil and tomatoes.

The best was having those 16 year old hands in the soil with us.

And that's that!

Like I said, lots of physical but not much emotional. Which was kind of refreshing considering all the doubting myself and plans for redefining myself, that have been going on lately.

And so dear friends, whatever you celebrate - whatever you believe, we here at Foxs Lane would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your families a wonderful, merry, love-filled weekend, whether it be Christmas or Hanukkah or any other day of the week.

Lots of love,




  1. I'm so glad you found the impetus to write again this week. I'm slightly jealous of that beautiful wood stack lined driveway. I love that falling into bed physically tired from hard work feeling, those are the best sleeps.
    Cheers Kate

  2. Ahh, it takes me back to being a kid with the lovely smell of freshly cut timber. My Dad even invented a tall brackety thing out of old fencing palings that he could put the long pieces in and then zip down the centre with the chainsaw and whammo, perfectly sized wood. I'd go in and help and then run away squealing at the first sign of a scorpion or spider!

  3. Merry Christmas to you all. It is so refreshing to see hard work shared... Not many of us do hard physical work like that anymore. Glad you shared this. Amazing firewood walls you have built. Well done!

  4. Lovely, Kate. May your next few weeks be peaceful, memorable and filled with family, food, friends, seedlings and more good sleep. Thank you for finding the resolve to keep coming back to this blog that enriches me and so many others also.

    Happy Holidays, Fox's Lane; may 2017 be another positive step on our way to peace.

  5. Beautiful stack of fire wood, where burning a lot because in our part of the world winter is just begon. Enjoy the warm summer and Christmas, because in a couple of months it's gonna be the other way around ��

  6. What a gorgeous stack of firewood - and how amazing to have done this with your own hands...

  7. Wow, that wall of firewood, a lot of blood, sweat and toil, but it must have been an amazing feeling seeing what you had achieved as a family team. Seasons greetings to you all.

  8. Love this! Blessings on your family.

  9. Those piles of wood look like fun to photograph...I'd probably be out there snapping away for half of the day :-) It also looks like a LOT of work which must be so good to have out of the way!
    I hope you have a lovely weekend / Christmas with your family Kate.

    Sarah x

  10. What a fantastic store of firewood Kate. Great pictures as always. Thank you for your interesting and heart felt posts through the year. Enjoy your festive times with your family. Elaine x

  11. Thank you Kate, and all the best to you and yours. I do so love reading about a slice of your life; that curve of fire wood looks amazing - a wonderful reward for all your hard work. With hugs

  12. Thank you for your kind wishes we wish the same greetings back to you and your family. Wow have you all been busy. What a satisfying sight though. Tell me where do you take the logs from first the farthest from the house or the nearest?

  13. That is an impressive wood stack Kate x

  14. Wow...your 'igloo' is bigger than my whole backyard! All that energy you put into the firewood will come back to you as a toasty warm fireplace come winter.

  15. Wow...your 'igloo' is bigger than my whole backyard! All that energy you put into the firewood will come back to you as a toasty warm fireplace come winter.


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Kate XX

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