Book Illustrations.

With the launch and the great media coverage this week of Leanne’s book Fairytale Love – How to Love Happily Ever After (Greg designed the cover and graphic inclusions) we realised that we hadn’t actually posted a blog on the fabulous illustrations that Random House commissioned Greg Keith to do for Jared Gulian’s book Moon Over Martinborough – How an American City Boy Became a Kiwi Farmer, published last year.

Jared has had fabulous success with his book full of heart-warming stories about olives, neighbours, friendships and farm animals. They make you laugh and cry and want to live in the country on an olive grove. You will also have to spot the stories about us, aka Leelee and Wolfie.

UPDATE. Jared’s book is now called “An Olive Grove at the Edge of the World.” Available https://www.jaredgulian.com/an-olive-grove-at-the-edge-of-the-world/

Giggles the Pig Stars in This Town.

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Giggles the pig, stealing the hearts of the crew from JAM TV.

There’s just one more sleep until This Town airs and we probably ought to be preparing autographed postcards of Giggles the pig. Pampered princess pig debuts on television. What will be next? Read More

10 Top Tips for Lifestyle Living.

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  1. Make a treaty with the wild bunnies when you arrive. They can hang out and hop around and add to the beauty of the place, munching on weeds and grass as long as they leave the little trees and vegetable garden alone.
  2. Put chicken wire around the vegetable garden fence.
  3. Make a deal with the birds. They can tweet and look gorgeous and be fed and supplied with bathing water as long as they Read More

Baby Pig Celebrates First Birthday.

Not so baby pig.
Not so baby pig.

This Christmas Day, Giggles the pig turned one.

There’s an upside to sharing a birthday with The Baby Jesus. There’s a lot of guests at your party, kids to play with, lots of laughter and excitement, and many, many morsels of  interesting food. Read More

Crafty Pigs and Other Critters.

Munchkin nephew with Giggles the pig
Munchkin nephew with Giggles the pig

When spring lambs began popping out everywhere in surrounding paddocks and the slowpoke veges in the garden decided to have a spectacular growth spurt, it suddenly became impossible for me to resist the urge to start a new project. With a thousand sensible projects, in many stages, already on the go around here at MAD I  felt as though I might just pop if I didn’t go a little wild and make some art.

Those sensible projects are a part of our bigger picture and they are super duper important and the Wolf is working his wonderful butt off every waking hour turning our barn into a  fabulous workshop and gallery to showcase our artistic wonders in the future, so I felt a teeny bit guilty leaving him neck deep in Read More

Lord Snowed In.

Giggles in the snow

We had a dusting of snow on July 25th that was exciting and unexpected. (It last snowed in these parts in the 1920’s.) We were delighted and distracted by falling flakes but it was more of a spectacle on the surrounding hills than the winter wonderland that was yet to come.

On Sunday evening, August 14th we excitedly anticipated a big snowfall. This time I optimistically packed The Wolfs suitcase for his return to work in the big smoke, but this was a polar blast that had been predicted, perhaps enough for polar bears to have a blast in? Just before midnight we abandoned all hope and cancelled flights because the Rimutaka Hill Road would probably close. And, indeed it did, for days and days. (Well from Monday to Thursday.)

So, The Wolf temporarily declared himself Lord Snowed In, banished from work, trapped at home, bleating something about Read More

This is the Pig That Shares our House.

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Giggles the baby pig

When bedtime comes, Giggles pretends that she’s happy to go outside, then she takes one look at the frosty grass, hangs her head in disgust, swivels her little butt in the other direction and scrambles up the back steps, through her pig door into the warmth of our human house. She has a house of her own the Wolf built. It resembles a playhouse that any little Princess would be proud to play in. It’s filled with cushions and blankets (or straw depending on the mud factor) and it’s fully lined with pink batts. She slept in it just fine until the single digit temperatures arrived. Just like other first time parents of pigs, we made some mistakes with our first remarkable pig Squiggles that we vowed to remedy with our second piglet.

Our last pig Squiggles.
  1. Buy from a better farm and get a healthy pig who will live forever
  2. Build a warm outdoor house
  3. Never feed from our hands
  4. Make sure that food and water are placed outdoors
  5. Have really good escape proof fencing
  6. Get two piggies so they can love each other
  7. Go on vacation before our days are consumed with a dependant bubba

So we did just fine with numbers one through to four. It was the Wolf that couldn’t help himself. It was he that Read More

Higgledy-piggledy.

Piggy with piggy

Some say that the word higgledy-piggledy is derived from a pig’s ability to create mess and disorder. The only mess and disorder our kunekune pig Giggles creates is if her big  bottom collides with our things. Things that bulge from the seams of our far too teeny tiny MAD house. Oh, and if I fail to greet her at the back door in time, to wipe wet winter mud off her adorable nose, hooves and undercarriage. Read More