Preserving food and drinks

18 June 2018
There are many food products that are easy to preserve at home. They are usually tastier, healthier and cheaper than those you can buy, and by adding them to your stockpile you’ll be increasing your options when it’s time to prepare a meal. The trick is to find a few hours when you can make some of your favourite preserves, pickles, spice blends or whatever you want to store. 


Weekend reading

15 June 2018
Hanno and I are off to lunch with Nanna Chel and her son today. It's nice to keep in touch with her and luckily I can see her when she comes to the Sunshine Coast for her break. Apart from that we have the last bit of interior ceiling painting being done today by a painter.  Life's good here - the garden is growing well, the chooks are happy and back to producing eggs and Gracie is progressing well with her training.

The honour guard of chooks.

More sewing and a touch of glue

12 June 2018
Hello friends!  Here are the cushions I made yesterday. The pink is a Tilda fat quarter found with the other one I made into a lamp skirt and showed yesterday. I remembered I bought these when Tricia was last here and I went home, put them in the cupboard and forgot all about them.  I really love this pink fabric, which I call pixelated rose, and have teamed it with beige linen from an old skirt of mine. 

Home sewing in the lounge room

11 June 2018
I've been sewing a few odds and ends to suit our new lounge room colours and style.  I didn't want to spend much, or anything really 🙄, so I looked in my fabric stash to see what cotton or linen I had in the right colours.  Out came some blue and white cotton I've had for at least 15 years, that made a skirt for a large lamp, and a Tilda fat quarter from last year that I'd forgotten about. That fat quarter made a skirt for a small lamp. I also had some dangly pink edging and that added just the right finish.  It's amazing what you can make from what's sitting in a cupboard.


Weekend reading

8 June 2018
I had a few emails from readers asking me to list the books in the bookcase I showed last week. Well, that would take too much time but here are three closeup photos so you can see the titles. When we moved the bookcase, I went through all the books and culled quite a few, these are what survived.

I've had a cold this week and I was sitting around and not doing much. I'm feeling better now so I'm looking forward to making a small lamp skirt and some cushion covers for the lounge room.

What are you doing this weekend?

Monte Carlo biscuits

6 June 2018
As promised, here is a recipe for an Australian biscuit called the Monte Carlo. I think they started selling Monte Carlos in the 1920s and when I was born in the late 1940s, they were a firmly established favourite for morning or afternoon tea.  Basically they're two butter biscuits sandwiched together with the help of butter cream and raspberry jam. Most people buy their Monte Carlos and I'm guessing they're thought of nowadays as being slightly old fashioned, but no matter, that is what I specialise in. 😊  I think you'll find that the homemade MC will win you over.


The simple art of stockpiling

4 June 2018
There is no doubt you'll save money if you keep a clean and well organised stockpile and you don't waste the food you grow or buy.  If I were out working for a living now, I'd make sure I had a full stockpile and a working pantry. Not only would it save me money to do that but it would also mean that if I didn't have the time to buy what I needed for the evening meal, I'd have enough good quality food in my kitchen to see me through quite a few meals. I learnt the benefits of an organised kitchen long ago when my kids were young and we lived three hours from the shops.  Hanno, the kids and I would do a "big shop" every four to six weeks, and we manage on that until we went back for the next "big shop." That taught me valuable lessons.

We emptied the stockpile cupboard yesterday then cleaned and repacked the cupboard.

Weekend reading

1 June 2018
Monte Carlo biscuits, I'll write about these and give the recipe next week.

It's a public holiday today for Maleny Show Day. We'll have Jamie here during the day and I have no doubt I'll be out in the garden celebrating show day my own way.  I made a batch of monte carlo biscuits for morning teas yesterday and I'm doing some school fete knitting for my grand-nephew Jonathan's school in Blayney. I'll be sending organic cotton dishcloths and homemade soap down for one of the stalls and I hope it contributes to a very good fundraising event in October. Country school fetes are such worthwhile events.

Slow changes to help you stay in your home

29 May 2018
We've come to the end of a two year period of renovations and home improvements. We did the work as we had the money, time and energy for it. Our goal was to modernise and safety-proof our home for our older age, and for our children to be able to easily sell the house when we die. While not wanting to sound morbid, that time is coming for us in the next 10 - 20 years and we don't want to spend that time on home improvements. We want to live life to the full, enjoy each other's company and provide hospitality when family and friends visit us. As it stands now, we both feel we've done enough to allow us to relax and live well although we'll continue to upgrade any safety concerns that present themselves in the coming years.



I need help from my EU readers

26 May 2018

Hello ladies and gentlemen of Europe. Privacy laws are in a state of change at the moment and as a blogger, European Union laws require me to give European Union visitors information about cookies used and data collected on my blog. 

I must display a cookie and privacy notice on my blog and Google emailed me saying they'd added one as a courtesy.  However, as I'm not in the EU I can't see it - it only shows in EU countries. If you're in the EU, I'd appreciate you commenting here to tell me if you see this notice, or not. Tell me what country you're in as well, that may help identify problem areas if it's not on display. Thanks to you all.

No more comments needed. Thanks everyone. 

Weekend reading

25 May 2018
It was delayed a short while but we're almost finished our final renovation project - a new tiled splashback in the kitchen.  I'll have more photos of our home next week but these two will give you an idea of what we've been doing (and when I say "we" I don't include myself in that in the kitchen 😊). We had a tiler help with the tiling yesterday and we're both very happy with the result.  What do you think of it?

The tiles are down but we haven't had a chance yet to clean up. I'll be doing that this morning.