About Bec C

I made the tree-change move from Sydney to my husband 'Dougal's' old family property on the mid-north coast several years ago, but only since the birth of my first son have I really lived here. In between raising 2 young sons, I am trying my hand at sustainable farm management... 'Trying' being the important word. Whilst the ability to pat my steers gives me much satisfaction, I love the fact that every morning I awake to space and open sky... even if it is 5am.

Saturday Night Fever

IMAG1011_1_Sophia_GroundWell there’s no doubt about it. If the recent inaugural Nabiac Winter Ball is anything to go by, Nabiac and its ‘environs’ celebrates ‘community’ with a certain panache. I say this with a certain amount of pride, as I had my own little role to play in putting it together. And really, there’s nothing like organising an event with others to make you feel a part of something ‘greater’… You know, ‘the greater good’ and all that. In fact, I’ve heard that people who do volunteer work are much happier than people who don’t.

Well, I can well believe it (not that that feeling of contribution towards the greater good can carry you through at all times, as we’ve…er… cough, cough…all seen). But as part of a team of migrant locals organising something for the community and its hall, this felt good. Actually, it felt great. As someone wrote to us after the event, ‘you all do ‘community’ so well’… (of course, it goes without saying that if it had been a disaster I would be distancing myself from any involvement whatsoever). Continue reading


Motherhood – a performance review

When Bec H and I began this blog, the aim was to maintain the theme of ‘when city meets country’. Sadly, I am very late with my entry this time around, as I haven’t been able to reconcile this theme with what has been occupying my mind – namely, children – and so haven’t known how to begin.

So, as Julie Andrews once sang in joyful song, how about I “start at the very beginning. It’s a very good place to start”.

When my first son was born, I received many cards saying ‘this is the happiest time of your life… Enjoy… etc etc’. But really, I don’t know that ‘happiest’ is how I would describe it. In fact, I found motherhood pretty overwhelming. As one great friend said – ‘Bec, you’ve just had major abdominal surgery [emergency cesaerean], and someone has shoved a baby into your arms as soon as you’re out of the operating theatre and said – here, look after this 24hrs a day’. Continue reading

Pumps, Friends, and Barbed Wire


barb wireThe other day, I found myself helping to fix a barbed wire fence in the dark. This is no easy task, as things can get a little ‘prickly’. It was however, fun, thanks to the fact that Bec H and Hubs were right beside me, wrangling with the ‘barb wire tightening tool’ (otherwise known as ‘strainers’. If you’ve ever tried using this tool without a demonstration, it would baffle even the keenest of practical minds, let alone using it in the dark. I myself have seen it in use multiple times, and it’s still a mystery to me… So in fact at this point I should admit that on this occasion I actually just stood there, murmuring words of encouragement to my friends as they ‘strained’ in the darkness that comes after dusk). Continue reading

Community Life

bull gateIt can take a long time in some places to feel like a local. Here, it took me about 2 years.

There’s nothing like a milestone in life, such as a wedding (or a birth), undertaken in a particular location to announce your presence in a community. 6 years ago we opted for an informal wedding on the farm, which was just as well because we had 220 guests. With so many expected, we turned to the local resources around us to help. A local butcher who’d been to school with my father in law was engaged to provide the roasted meats, a local caterer for the salads, a local flower grower grew the flowers, a local woman made my floral hair thingy, and unexpectedly the local publican threw her lot in to help with the drinks.

And then it rained. Continue reading


As I’ve been telling my boys since they were born, “S stands for Snakes”.

And then the other day, I stepped on one. I’d gone to retrieve a shovel on the edge of long grass. As I stepped away, I subconsciously registered that something under my foot (I was in sandals) had felt unexpected – it felt long, narrow, hard, … and soft, all at the same time. How can that be? By the time I turned around, still not really thinking, to see what might have been under my foot, I was a couple of metres away, and thought, ‘oh, I’ve stepped on a lizard!

So I went closer, and saw that it was a lizard with no head – its body, in fact, just kept going, and going, and going. I think it kept going for about 7 feet. That’s quite long really for a lizard. It’s also long for a snake. I can only assume it didn’t care I stepped on its tail because it couldn’t be bothered to move its head so far back. Continue reading


IMG_0600 BW

Colin. It’s not a usual name for a horse. Especially a race horse (imagine the race caller – “… aaaaand, Colin is coming up ’round the outside, closing in, yes! Colin wins the race!” Hmmm – not very Melbourne Cup, is it?). In fact, when I talk about Colin people automatically assume I am referring to a person. But no, he is in fact a very big horse. I think of him as ‘brown’, but apparently the correct term is ‘chestnut’. I have actually been trying to find Colin a better home for some time now, but recent events have caused me to rethink… Continue reading