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Life and Bush Lemons

It is bliss to feel good again. I woke Monday morning and thought, “I’m back!!!” It is wonderful.

I can think clearly, the pain is gone, I’m no longer agitated, and I can’t begin to describe how lovely that is. My only remaining symptom is fatigue, but I think that’s just my body relaxing after fighting that dratted venom for so long. I get to rest now, and I sure have been, sleeping 11 hours a night with rests during the day. I don’t mind though. I’d rather be tired any day than the pain-riddled, agitated mess of a girl I’ve been for the last five weeks. Life is very, very good.

With my renewed energy I’ve been spending nearly every day outside, bundled up during the frosty mornings, basking in warmth during the sun-drenched afternoons. It’s been glorious.

I’ve dug holes and planted trees and bushes – lemons, quince, oranges, blueberries, goji berries, elderflower, lilly pillies, and roses. I’ve hauled goat manure up from the paddocks to spread over gardens and pots, planted silver beet, radicchio, beetroot, spinach, Brussels sprouts, red cabbage, morning glories, rhubarb, aloe vera, mint, and a pot of basil for my sunny kitchen window, then spread hay mulch over everything. I’ve got aching muscles, blisters, bruises, scrapes, and cuts, rosy cheeks from the sun, and I couldn’t be happier.

Thursday and Friday I emerged from my hermit gardener ways to spend time with lovely, lovely people. I can’t think of anything better than good visits with kindred spirits after a rough time.

I visited my new friend, Sally, a prodigiously talented potter, gardener, cook, painter, and free spirit who never fails to make me laugh hard and feel that life truly is a gift. I stopped in to chat with another new friend, Kathy, who invited me to join her fabulous gardening group and who never ceases to amaze me with the things she grows and makes. I love wandering through her gardens and greenhouses and learning all sorts of new things. She never lets me leave without a big hug and an armload of seedlings, cuttings, seeds, and all sorts of inspiration for home and garden.

Yesterday I got to spend the afternoon with my dear friend, Oma, who invited me over to pick bush lemons from the massive tree in her garden.

The weather was stunning, with cool breezes blowing while hot winter sun warmed our bones and bronzed our faces. We chatted away as we navigated thorny branches and plucked the fragrant, knobbly fruits.

Bear gave me an extendable branch trimmer to use, and it was brilliant for reaching the tip top branches that always seem to have the most fruit. It did double duty for us, bringing fruit within reach while allowing us to prune as we went. Most of the time the branches fell gently within reach, but we had to dive for cover a few times as the thorn-covered branches hurtled straight for us. We emerged laughing but unscathed.

The bush lemons are a bit smaller this year, but still juicy and with delicious zest that makes everything from shortbread to scones to lemon sima taste absolutely exquisite. One day this week I’ll set up on the veranda and zest, zest, zest, freezing my bounty for baking in the months ahead.

After the bush lemons were picked, Oma and I went for a walk around her property, checking on the olive and peach trees, sharing our dreams and goals for our gardens and produce. We had tea and ginger beer as we swapped tales from our week, then headed down to the cellar to taste Oma’s latest batch of plum wine. It’s hands down her best yet. We got it mixed and tasted some more until it was just right, then bottled it up to age a bit longer.

Then we watered the wormwood plant I brought her from my garden, and loaded up the horseradish and spider lily plants she gave me from hers. We made plans to butcher ducks and chooks together on Monday, hugged each other tight, and waved good-bye.

It was a lovely day.

Now it’s Saturday morning, quiet and sunny and peaceful, time to enjoy a leisurely breakfast with Bear before heading outside to plant my last two orange trees and start digging a plot for my raspberries. Oh yes, and laundry. Mustn’t forget the laundry.

What are you up to this weekend? xo

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Liz Posmyk - So glad to hear that you are on the mend again, lovely. I’m shattered with jet lag… taking longer than I’d thought to get back on my feet. Love your lemons. Celebrating mine at present too xx

bellini - Lovely to hear that you are feeling almost yourself Krista. Time with friends will heal all. This week I am housesitting for a friend, A change of scenery is better than a vacation sometimes, since it costs nothing 🙂

Cathy - Yeah so pleased to hear Krista that you are on the mend 🙂 I love the look of those bush lemons 🙂 I have a big pile of laundry to get sorted this weekend. That will have to be a priority.

Turkey's For Life - Great that you’re on the mend Krista – must feel great for you. Those bush lemons remind me a lot of some of the lemons grown around here. They only ripen in December – our winter, of course 🙂 – and the smells on the local market stalls selling them is divine. 🙂

Jackie Smith - Yes, add me to the list of those happy to hear you are on the mend again!!! I am canning pears this morning as this year’s heat wave has brought the crop to ripening several weeks earlier than usual. Tell me what do you do to preserve lemon zest. . .freeze it or dry it?

Deborah Regen - Thatta girl, Krista! Thou shall not be defeated by spiders! All those lovely lemons – enjoy them. Doing odds & ends this weekend, oh yes and laundry too.

budgetjan - So glad to hear the venom has left you now. I agree that sleeping is so wonderful when sick or recovering and having your farm just outside your door to potter around in is wonderful.

Nancy - I’m fighting jet lag but looking forward to seeing my hubbie who flies in today only to fly out again tomorrow. I happy to read you’re on the mend – I had no idea the after effects and the impact on your health have been so horrendous. I’m so sorry you went through that.

Anna Johnston - Wawhoooo…. High Fives and happy dancing that you are feeling back to you, and good health, and that awful agitation has left you. 🙂
Love your lemons, they just look so dang happy and healthy. Going to look for bush lemons at the markets, wanting to find some that are lemony, but not sour. Ha! Im sure a fruit exists.

Happy weekend my end, had a lazy day yesterday, went for a truffle degustation dinner last night, and have spent most of today pottering, cooking and hanging out with my gorgeous puppy in the sunshine. So great. 🙂

Hotly Spiced - I’m so glad you’re feeling better. I love bush lemons! They’re a bit ugly compared with other lemons but they are very fragrant. That will be some task removing all the rind but how lovely to have it in the freezer all ready to use xx

Tandy Sinclair - Those lemons are amazing! Glad you are feeling better 🙂

Krista - What a lovely thing to do, Val! 🙂 That sounds like a wonderful vacation to me. 🙂

Krista - Ohhh, jet lag is such a bugger, @liz_posmyk:disqus, how well I remember the utter lethargy that followed any trip across the pond. Wishing you good rest and recovery soon. XO

Krista - You and me both, @wanderingsheila:disqus. 🙂 I actually like doing laundry. I find it quite peaceful. 🙂

Krista - Oh wow, the scent from the lemon stalls must be incredible, @turkeysforlife:disqus 🙂

Krista - Thank you so much, @disqus_WseMqaTPwi:disqus!! I do so love canned pears. 🙂 I just freeze my lemon zest. It seems to work beautifully. 🙂

Krista - Thanks so much, @deborahregen:disqus 🙂 An odds and ends weekend sounds marvelous. 🙂

Krista - It really is wonderful, @budgetjan:disqus xo It does my heart good. 🙂

Krista - Jet lag is so debilitating, isn’t it, @disqus_xRgkTDNCQJ:disqus ? I’m happy you and your hubs get to spend some time together, even though it’s so short. XO

Krista - You’re the best, @disqus_o9c9vkchcC:disqus 🙂 “high fives and happy dancing” made me smile so big. 🙂 A truffle degustation dinner sounds amazing!!

Krista - You are right, Charlie, they are ugly. 🙂 Maybe that’s one reason I like them so much. They’re ugly but smell and taste so good. 🙂

Krista - Thanks so much, @tandysinclair:disqus 🙂

Nagi | RecipeTin Eats - Gosh, you are living my dream life!!! I’m so glad you are feeling better. And bush lemons? I didn’t even know. Off to do some research! Love the photos – makes me dream of another life!

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