Summer of love

Bush fires, extreme heat, power failures and possible power restrictions on top of water restrictions and smoke filled air are all daily reminders of why I can’t stand Summer.

Since we got back from the beach I have been checking the Age’s weather forecast page every few hours with tired resignation but I just cheered HOORAH! when I saw that Saturday’s 38°c has now gone down to 32°c. That 6 year old birthday party we have to attend will be a little less sultry. Last year all the chocolate coins hidden for the treasure hunt had melted to sticky hot-chocolate liquid. At least this year I won’t be pregnant. I have been speaking to my mum on the phone who has recently become quite the web-savvy-gran and she will say, “I’ve been watching the weather radar and it’s raining everywhere but here!”. She, like me, is completely weather obsessed.

So we can only water twice a week and that’s if you can remember to spring out of bed (or go out in the dark) during the designated hours on the designated days. We are planning on getting a water tank to collect rainwater (if and when it rains) but there is a huge waiting list on those. So in the meantime there is the bath water. This morning I transported 7 buckets of saved kid’s bath water out to the garden and tipped them all over my thirsty beans, tomatoes, herbs and young trees. It was quite the ordeal. I had to sneak past Sleeping Lily’s (woot!) door and down the stairs while wearing my flip-flops without spilling too much of the precious stuff, over and over again. Sneaking in flip-flops is really hard, there is quite an art to sucking them up against your soles and I notice that tonight I have aching toes from scrunching them. I think there may be a new and surprising market for water carrying vessels we can wear on our heads opening up because it was tiring work.

On a side note, while I am feeling very hot, and grumpy and very AUSTRALIAN (because feeling hot and grumpy is a national pastime), the Times Mummy blog reckons Kiddley is “almost unbearably perky and American“. Who woulda thunk it?

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24 Responses

  1. One of the best ways for me to endure hot summers is the CD by B-52’s “cosmic thing”. Love this one…and Bushfire seems esp. relevant to what you’re going through…

  2. ha ha, too funny (the review by the Times)

  3. My in-laws had an inventive solution to rain barrels that I thought you might appreciate. Instead of using a store bought rain barrel, they got these big plastic barrels that are used to hold soda (ie: Mountain Dew, Coca Cola, etc)in their previous life. They just put a spiggit in, laid them on their sides on a simple X frame that they built and cut a hole in the top to run the gutter into. They worked splendidly! They had rainwater for watering the plants all season long.
    I can email you a more thurough set of instructions if you’re interested.

  4. Hope it cools down for you…Also, regarding Kiddley, it’s perfect. From someone is unbearably American, but not really perky, I think you do a great job coming up with an amazing range of fun, practical ideas, and at the same time the site has a subtle charm of something very definitely not American.

  5. 🙁 wow, i really feel for you guys down under right now. that’s a horrible situation to be put in. i know you’re suffering. i’ll think watery thoughts for you all!
    hhmmmm, i would have said that kiddley is fairly worldly. the contributors seem to be from all over!

  6. This reminds me of my summers here in Arizona. Right now it’s the coldest it’s been in years. Plants are freezing overnight! However, I vividly remember reading your blog in my Arizona summers to vicariously experience your Australian winter. I feel for you in the most empathetic way.

  7. Oops. Sorry about the US/OZ confusion – must spend longer on research…

  8. I have some links saved for building your own rain barrel. I haven’t gotten around to it yet, but hope to some day. Here they are, in case you want to try it out while waiting for a “real” one…,1785,HGTV_3546_2165903,00.html (PDF) (PDF)

    Hope your weather cools off soon, and that the birthday party is tolerable! Ugh.

  9. glad to hear Lily is sleeping.
    And great idea with the bath water… you can also (if you let your shower water warm up) collect the cold water into buckets and use that for later. You may need more buckets for that.

    hope the weather turns nicer. I’m stuck in Idaho USA and it’s about 10 degrees F. here and it’s getting harder and harder to be motivated to walk to work.

  10. Another proud Melbournian Aussie here who has also been carting her bathwater (and rinse cycle from the washing machine) out to her poor parched plants. At least its raining today. Rain, whats that?!

  11. From one hot grumpy sleep deprived Aussie to another … IT’S RAINING!!

  12. says:

    Another Melbournian – so thankful it’s raining today (and forecast to rain all weekend) but we’re like you Claire – waiting for a rain tank so we can catch some of it!

  13. The rain gods must have read your post. It has been raining here all morning, and it sounds wonderful. I too just cant stand the summer time, it is so draining. I hope the rain continues for the weekend too.

  14. I know! Blissful rain! 🙂

  15. Wow, that AlphaMummy quote from Dooce is possibly the most UNrepresentative ever!!

  16. says:

    I was feeling awfullly guilty about the kids bath water too but the slog with the buckets was too much of an ordeal at the end of the day. However we bought a small water feature pump (approx $12) and some clear hosing and now the water makes its own way (via window) to the vegie patch.

  17. You can drain/siphon a bath tub using a hose as long as the bath end is higher than the garden end. You have to get the water flowing first though, the best way is to put the nozzle end of the hose in the bath and turn it on to fill up the hose fully. The water should then drain back through the other way once you disconnect it from the tap. I haven’t tried it yet but my grandfather assures me it works…

  18. says:

    Is there a sweeter sound in Melbourne this summer than waking to rain on the roof like we did this morning?Hang in there girls, only 40 days til the first day of Autumn!

  19. I am going to say it too. I hate Summer. (well ok, I love my Summer childhood memories but as an adult have never been a fan of these oppressive 35+ days)
    Bring on the Melbourne drizzle!

  20. Speaking of ‘unbearably American’, I can’t believe you used ‘flip-flops’ in your post instead of thongs!
    The hot weather would be ok if it were just hot, but the moisture hanging in the air just makes it humid and’s currently raining where I live and I still have the airconditioner on because of the humidity!

  21. I am glad I’m not the only one obsessed with the Bureau of Meteorology website – I have six of their pages bookmarked, and check them frequently. Isn’t it fantastic following the frontlines (ie rain & cool change) in on the radar?

  22. My nickname is “junior weather watcher” – I can see I’m not alone in this b.o.m. obsession! Sending you some mild summer vibes from Perth – hope you’re getting lots of rain.

  23. Ah the joy of a PC in this ghastly weather. Another good site is allow you to watch a graph of the temperature rise or drop (they update every 15 minutes I think). Or am I just reveiling what a nerdy mum I am?

  24. says:

    I’ve been using 2L fruit juice and milk bottles to get the bath water outside – they are so much easier to carry than buckets – and they have lids to stop spillage.