Crafting away on the needles

19 January 2019
I read this article about the downside of microfibre cloths a few months ago and started looking for a new set of dish cloths that I feel comfortable using.  Microfibre is out, there are some water problems with cotton as well, so I rediscovered the knitting hemp I had in my stash. Last night at midnight, I started knitting a new set of diagonal kitchen cloths while I watched cooking videos.

I thought the hemp would be stiff but it's easy to knit with.  I love that the dishcloths won't stretch out sideways. 

Homemaking and getting back to normal

16 January 2019
It feels good to be starting a new year with a clean and well organised house. If I was still writing for a living I'd also have daily schedules, to-do lists written out, my calendar marked up with birthdays, special events and various appointments, as well as a daily writing plan and monthly chapter list. Being organised makes things easier. It gives you a starting point and an end for each day and if you're smart, it will include family time and short breaks during the day. It's important that you take that time away from work because it helps maintain your mental health. If you're looking after babies or small children, even though it's difficult at times, you must have time to rest and relax whenever you can manage it. Child rearing can be intense and usually you have no one to step in if you get sick - it makes good sense to take care of yourself, so plan it into your days.  January is the ideal time to think about this kind of organising and to work out how to establish or improve daily routines.

Summer holidays

9 January 2019
Summer holidays usually means grandkids to us. We're lucky enough to be close to them so they're often here during the holidays.  Now that they're older - Jamie and Alex will be eight this year and Eve will be four, they don't present me with the full time care they once needed and usually now it's just talking to them about all manner of things and keeping the food coming. However being the person I am, I like to throw in skill building whenever I can.  

Jamie has a grandma in Korea too, I hope she sees this photo.  Hello Sun Ja! We're thinking of you and send much love from Australia.  ♥️

Today Jamie made his first Irish soda bread. It's a simple recipe, it's fabulous for morning or afternoon tea and it can be on the table in under an hour. If unexpected visitors drop by, this is the ideal offering - along with butter and homemade jam.

Easy budgeting

4 January 2019

The Christmas feasting is over and we've all but lost the cricket test match so it's a good time to get back to real life and start organising. In the past week Hanno has put in some time going through our ongoing insurance bills. A bit of research on the internet and a couple of phone calls and he's cut $164 from the home and contents and $124 from the car insurance. It can be a boring task but if someone asked you if you would like to earn $288 in 30 minutes, you'd jump at the chance.

Upgrading the blog

30 December 2018
Passionfruits are developing from these beautiful flowers.

Thank you all for your love and good wishes. It feels great having the support of so many of you.  Hanno and I are optimistic and looking forward to the new year so don't worry about us. We know what we're doing, our family is close by and we have as much help as we need.

Hello again

28 December 2018
As I said in my last post, I'd be back if I had anything important to share. I'm not saying anything about this on instagram because I feel a bit exposed over there.  A few months ago, I was diagnosed with a non-malignant brain tumour. It's a meningioma - it's not cancer and it's not life threatening. The specialist has suggested that we should watch it for 12 months to see if it's growing, and if it is, how fast. When they know that there will either be treatment in the form of surgery and/or radiotherapy, or no treatment at all. My doctor's wife has had the same tumour for the past 10 years and hers has remained the same size and is stable.  We're hoping mine will be the same.

Dear friends ...

12 September 2018
Dear friends

I haven't been here for a couple of weeks because Hanno was sick, then I got a cold and it became easier to stay away. I've thought a lot about the blog during that time and I know now the time is right for me to step away. The blog will stay where it is, so you can come back to read when you want to, but in a couple of weeks I'll close down the ability to leave comments. I might return for a single post in the future if there is something important to share but this will be the last regular post. I've made a few posts on Instagram recently and I might continue there, but I'm not sure about that yet.