Tag Archives: House sit

Da Block!

Christmas and New Year came and went in a blink of an eye. We are now settled on our block in the Clare Valley of SA! Yes, we have our own block!

It’s been a long process but some land we first saw in June last year finally became available….so now it’s ours!! After 12 1/2 years on the road we now can use this as a base….that’s all, as we still wish to travel Australia as much as we can…before we can’t!!

We moved the van onto the ‘house site’ area next to the shed. The rest of the block is pasture for sheep. B feels right at home, but I’m having more trouble….keep thinking we’re doing another house sit for someone!! Jeda loves it. She’s used to sheep, but these big dogs called Alpacas that make a weird noise when she comes too close are crazy!

Over the next few months we hope to do some improvements: a septic, solar and some plantings. So travel is on hold for just a short while, but we have big plans for winter this year…..hint: BRB & Races….Birdsville, Qld…….wanna come???!!!

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From the Ocean, to Rocks to the Hills into the Valley!

Been a bit busy since last post so I apologise for that. We continued around the Eyre Peninsula visiting our favourite sites and campgrounds.

Haslam is one – south of Ceduna. A small fishing village where oysters are the main industry. There is a small campground with a nearby toilet, picnic area & water tap. A boat ramp too leads to a very rocky and weedy beach, but the jetty is great for fishermen.

Easter was approaching so we headed inland to Murphy’s Haystacks, a group of rock formations on private land and also a camp site. As luck would have it we had overcast days so the colours I was hoping for on the rocks didn’t happen. But we caught up with the property’s owner and had a good yak. He now sells local honey from the area.

Then on to the Minnipa area, to Tcharkuldu & Pildappa Rocks. Both have camping areas with drop toilets and picnic tables. A good workout to walk around and over! Quiet too, even on a long weekend!

Bad weather was looming so we decided to head to a Recreation Ground at Kimba to wait it out. Good thing too as we had heaps of rain and flash flooding. Kimba really goes all out to accommodate Travellers with camp areas at low-cost ($15 per night, no power but full amenities, honour system) and incentives to spend and enjoy their town. Kimba is halfway across Australia geographically.

As the weather wasn’t getting any better we decided to head straight to the Mid North region, to Port Augusta (for supplies) through Horrocks Pass and Melrose – beautiful areas. Along the way we stopped overnight at Goyder Line RA and Yacka Picnic Ground. Yacka is also a lovely town but seems to be dying since the pub closed. Volunteers and residents do their best to make the picnic grounds a lovely spot to stop for a night. Only $15 per night with power.

Now we are helping out on a farm in the Clare Valley that was our very first House Sit many years ago. It’s Autumn and the colours are just magnificent. Will post photos of the Valley in my next blog.

House sit at Laura Bay, SA….again!

Whilst waiting for our new axle to be sent from Brisbane (the floods put the order back a bit), we stopped at Laura Bay, about 25klms south of Ceduna to do some fishing.

We had a good run with many days bringing in ample King George Whiting, Blue Swimmer Crabs and squid. It’s a lovely bay but not sheltered that much from the winds, so we had many days of just watching the tide go in and out! It DOES have an abundance of mosquitoes and March flies though! We did a short house sit for the owners of the house in the Conservation Park again before packing up and heading off to find somewhere to go for Easter

I’d like to promote the business in Ceduna that worked on our ‘scrubbing out our tyre’ problem, Ceduna Metal Solutions, 70 Schwartz Street. The owner spent a day trouble shooting with B eliminating things to decide what was causing the problem. Turned out to be the axle. Highly recommend them!

We have hit the road again and wandering around parts of the Eyre Peninsula we haven’t yet been or revisiting some we enjoyed previously….stay tuned! (Happy Easter everyone!)

House Sit near Mt Barker

With Christmas coming on we were having trouble finding somewhere to stop over the holiday season, so whilst I was browsing The Grey Nomads site I came upon a house sit, so applied and within a day or two we had a new abode!

house-sit-mt-barker-our-campsite
Our campsite at Mt Barker house sit

Mt Barker is only 50+ kilometres from Albany, so handy for retail therapy! It has worked out well for us and the owners. 100 acres including a vineyard, house and beautiful gardens. Our camp spot is under some old shady trees which has been handy since the temperatures have been up and down in the extreme the past few weeks. We have been able to sample a few cellar doors in the area and we find Mt Barker a lovely town with friendly locals.

Christmas and New Year came and went without much fan fare and we will soon be venturing out further to do some day trips to see the sights in this region….more to come.

 

Harvest Time in the Valley

We arrived back in Clare early November and it felt like we’d never left. Jeda remembered the Kelpie Boys and the Lab and they were like old friends. It was straight into harvest – ‘B’ drove the ‘Chaser’ – collecting the grain from the Harvester as they go then depositing in silos in the paddocks. I did Domestic Diva type stuff as before, but the majority of the cooking was left up to the ‘Farmerette’ thank goodness. Whilst we were there friends visited who enjoy metal detecting as they travel so I had a go around the farm. Quite addictive once you find something! The thrill of finding an old relic, coin or piece of history is a bit of fun. I know a good number of Grey Nomads do gold detecting – that gold coin can help pay for your trip!

We house sat whilst the farm owners had Christmas with their family. We had a quiet festive day but didn’t forget to indulge in the prawns! We progressed to checking stock and water troughs so had fun on the quad bikes! Whilst there I was lavished with South Australian hospitality when I turned 50. Very spoilt with a flash dinner in the good dining room! NYE was a bust as ‘B’ came down with a man cold…need I say more!?

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The Clare Valley SA

So we now have something to fill in a month or so….or so we thought! We headed to Clare from the York Peninsula end of February. We had been asked if we’d do a house/pet sit on a property north of Clare. As we’d never really done one before we said ‘why not!?’

We arrived to a beautiful property about 10 minutes out of Clare CBD. It is a working farm running cattle, sheep and four different crops. The owners greeted us warmly and made us feel at home right away. The Homestead is gorgeous and exudes the history of this area. We parked our rig by their shed and took in our view – a beautiful 4.5 acre succulent, cactus and tree lined garden with hand made artwork throughout. What a lot of work had been put into this garden.

After being introduced officially to the most important members of the family – the dogs – we bid farewell to our hosts as they jetted off and left us to enjoy the rare opportunity to live in a house! Well we didn’t really as we are so used to our van we still ate & slept in it! I got to love Clare and it’s surrounds. As most would know wineries abound in this area and they are some of the best in Australia. To fill in our days ‘B’ and I decided to do some gardening – and it just snowballed from there. Lots of weeding, moving of rocks, planting of shrubs, cleaning of the pool, walking of dogs, playing with dogs, feeding dogs……just the usual housey stuff.

After many weeks the owners came home, lagged out and weary so ‘B’ and I and Jeda took off for a week to check out the surrounds. We visited Murray Town, Terowie (lovely little town with stores just like they were in the early days), Burra, Saddleworth then back to Clare. Burra is a must see – we got the Passport for all the attractions, historic sights etc and spent a few days visiting them all – well worth the money.

‘B’ was offered work on the farm seeding. What’s seeding? was our reply. So ‘B’ had 6-8 weeks on & off of driving a big John Deere tractor with the seeding machinery behind – don’t ask me to explain anymore! (See photos) And as it turned out the Farmerette in Training (lady owner) had to go to England on short notice so I stepped in as Farmerette with L Plates for seeding – feeding the men, washing, shopping, etc etc and looking after the fur-kids! Great experience for both of us and fun to boot!

But it all had to come to an end and it did mid June.

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