Dang that iPhone’s good with the cattle

Don't ever let it be said that farmers are a technologically-incompetent bunch. As the price of labour and farm inputs rise, the pressure on farmers to use technology to their advantage builds. Some of the machines being used on Australian farms are incredible. There's a grading machine that takes thousands of photographs and sorts produce into sizes based on the images. GPS … [Read more...]

CCB. JFA. CCR. WTF? Help!

Please tell me I'm not the only mum who reads her childcare bill and has a brain explosion? I've been doing this childcare caper for six years now and I'm still no clearer. I wrote about my confusion for the Family Matters Page, which appears every Wednesday in the Gold Coast Bulletin. This is what I wrote. I’ve just opened my quarterly child care rebate statement and the … [Read more...]

Bruno Mars eat/sing your heart out

We were up early this morning for a very special event. Alex, our eldest son, recently joined the All Saints school choir and this morning the choir sang live on Spencer Howson's breakfast program on ABC Radio Brisbane. The ABC team drove to Boonah bright and early to record the performance. The children were amazing - as were their teachers Mrs Munnings and Mrs … [Read more...]

Oils ain’t oils

When you shop for olive oil, you'd be forgiven for thinking the imported European oils would be the best. According to Peter Agnew - the subject of my Ask a Farmer column this weekend - that's not always the case. Australian olive and olive oil producers are struggling to compete with the glut of cheap, imported product that's flooding the local market. They say it's … [Read more...]

Hey T-Rex, pass the toothpaste

We're a little bit dinosaur crazy here at Bean HQ. A certain 4-year-old is particularly fond of the scary creatures. We have little dinosaurs everywhere ... the bedroom, loungeroom, the sandpit, in the car and in the bathroom. The bookshelves are overflowing with dinosaur books ... want to know about the triassic period? Just ask me, seven years of dino books and I'm an … [Read more...]