Weekend Reading

12 February 2021
I've gone a bit berserk this week and have been cleaning cupboards and drawers in the kitchen in addition to a lot of other work that HAD to be done. I still haven't done the pantry or the stockpile cupboard but I'll get there next week.  On the subject of stockpiling, it's got such a bad reputation since the Covid toilet paper wars, I'm changing the name of my stockpile cupboard to my larder. It's got a comfy ring to it and it feels right to make the change.


This new cutlery tray has a slider on top so I can fit in the vast number of spoons etc. I have in my collection. BTW, I have more teaspoons in my tea station. 😊 I'm definitely not a minimalist.


Summer temperatures aren't as high as they usually here, it's been a very mild summer, but it stayed humid, so it still feels hot. I've been outside in the bush house repotting and rearranging and I hope to have it ready to go for another year by the time we start up in the garden again.  We've always started our gardening year in March because in our climate, that is the best time to plant seeds, seedlings and cuttings. As we go into autumn and winter the weather continues to improve and is perfect for growing all kinds of food. In the colder months, we don't have the crippling heat of summer which requires more water than I'm prepared to give any garden nor the insects the hot weather brings.  I love that I can follow Monty Don along on Gardener's World and for most plants, I plant at the some time as Monty. I love the mix of flowers, shrubs, bulbs, herbs, vegetables and fruit in his garden and I wish we had an Australian TV program that is similar. I do watch Gardening Australia occasionally but their emphasis is on food plants and most of their stories are in climates far cooler than ours, so they're irrelevant. At our age we need a smaller garden because we love gardening, as well as the vegetables, herbs, fruits and flowers we produce in it. We had a large garden for 20 years and it became a burden with all the work it needed to keep it at its prime.


This is my gadget drawer.  It's still looks like a dog's dinner but it's a vast improvement on what it was a few days ago. 

We're looking after Jamie this weekend and as he loves to cook, I think he'd like to help me make some jam. We'll also make sausage rolls on Saturday and zucchini fritters for Sunday lunch and for him to take for his school lunch on Monday and Tuesday. I have a green cleaning workshop on the weekend too, so it looks like I'll be tired but it will be worth it.


And here is my baking cupboard. I keep my baking trays, bread and cake tins here.

I've been very happy to see the Covid vaccinations start up in many countries. It won't change things short term but it will make a better future for most of us. If you're in an area with a lot of Covid cases, please be careful, stay safe and healthy and let us know how you're going.

Here are the readings this week. I hope you take some time to browse through them and have a happy weekend.  See you next week!  xx
πŸͺ΄πŸŒΏπŸͺ΄

31 comments

  1. You are a whirlwind of organizing and cleaning. Could you come to my house in California and organize me, if you have energy left?

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    1. Organising isn't hard, Terra, and when you finish your work, it will make you feel like a saint and a world beater. Start small in 15 minute blocks. Each of my drawers took about 20 minutes.

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  2. We love homemade sausage rolls too, Rhonda. A friend recently shared a recipe for a vegetarian version with filling made from walnuts, breadcrumbs, feta, tamari and herbs. They were delicious too.

    The milder temps have been lovely this Summer. I've grown zinnia flowers. I'm sure your cottage garden is looking beautiful.

    MegXx

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  3. Larder has a much nicer ring to it and what is wrong with a bit of planning and keeping yourself well stocked, anyway?

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    1. There's nothing wrong with it, I've been doing it for over 20 years and will keep doing it. My problem was the name "stockpile" got a bag reputation during the first Covid lockdown. And with you, I like the word larder. Using larder, I won't have people who don't know me come here and criticise my stockpiling just because they don't understand what we do.

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  4. Good afternoon Rhonda, Hanno and Gracie, well we've just been told we're in 5days of stage 4 lockdown again in Victoria. Give that gorgeous boy a big hug as we now can't have our two out for a sleepover weekend and they live 45 mins away so hope this doesn't extend again. My grown up side knows it's for our own good but the outbreaks in Melbourne are along way from here! Anyway washing,ironing and gardening but no games, kids cooking and beach trips cancelled. Best wishes to all stay safe and many thanks to all those emergency workers doing there best for all! πŸ™ƒ

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    1. I'm sorry you can't see your grandkids, Jenny. Fingers crossed that it's only for 5 days. xx

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  5. I agree with what you said about changing it to larder instead of stockpile cupboard, i have always had a larder, seeing my mothers cupboards empty in the 1970s here in the UK, i have always had a good stock of food. Keep safe. Sue

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  6. sounds like a busy but lovely weekend Rhonda. Isnt it funny, I watch Gardening Australia and always think they focus too much on hot climates!

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    1. Yeah, it's all in the perspective, Tan. Gardening Australia has 8 presenters, 7 of them focus on Australia below the Brisbane line. Jerry is our solo man in Queensland.

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  7. You have always kept your larder or stockpile, no reason you should change now. Where you live is comparatively isolated, and you are not as young as you were, so making sure you have supplies to rely on if you are I'll, or some difficulty arises could only ever be considered sensible

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    1. I'm only changing the name, Karen. I'm keeping the stockpile. :- )

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  8. Organizing just does a body good. It's one of my favorite things to do and the good news, is that it can be done seasonally, so each year is like a new beginning.

    Thank you for the list. I always find something new to learn.

    Blessings to you and yours...

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  9. *haha* Yes, there you go... larder it is. :-) It's funny how, during this pandemic, having a well-stocked pantry is all of a sudden considered "hoarding". Our great-grandparents simply called it being smart. But that's ok... they can call me a hoarder all they like. I've got quite a large "larder" & have for 20+ years. It's going to stay that way. ~Andrea xoxo

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  10. Language and how we interpret it is an ever-evolving sorta thing, isn't it?!?! Larder works perfectly. Perhaps even better! Have fun with Jamie and kudos on the tidying your cupboards. Always a nice feeling, that. And I usually come away inspired to make this or that afterwards.

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  11. Hi, I second Terra's request. Please come to my home in Upstate New York -- I'm tired of my mess -- and I keep rearranging it! Do you bake in your baking cupboard (I see the electrical outlet))? I like it. And, I love your tea spoons. I'm a BIG tea lover and like to use different-sized spoons just for fun. Great post!

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    1. I don't bake in the cupboard, it's just for storage. The power point was for an old range hood, long gone. Maybe you need to rethink your kitchen, it might not be organised to suit the way you work.

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  12. Hi Rhonda, I'd never heard of Monty Don until I read something in the paper about him this week, and now you've mentioned him. I'll take this as a sign the universe wants me to get acquainted with his work. Nice job of tidying up! I just cleaned a "miscellaneous" drawer and the toaster. That plus sweeping up a dusting of snow at -8 degrees has left me feeling quite virtuous. Enjoy your time with Jamie - I like the sound of the menu. Beth in MN

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    1. Getting to know Month Don would be time well spent, Beth. -8, brrrrrr.

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  13. Hi Rhonda,
    I have the same cutlery draw...it is great and I feel more organized with the two levels.
    Yes same as JennyP...not fun in lockdown again. A family birthday lunch cancelled today...what can you do?
    I watched the Liziqi link..she is quite fascinating. She makes everything look easy..but I know it would take lots of skill...amazing.
    Yes making sure my larder is kept up also...love that name too ☺
    Keep well all.

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  14. I have always called all of our food the pantry and my thoughts are that all of us who had a stockpile a year ago have put less stress on food supplies since we had what we needed when everything locked down. So many had to go out and completely stock their kitchens since they rarely cooked at home.

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  15. Hi Rhonda, You are always so busy and productive. I have an apple crisp, (crumble) baking in the oven right now. The scents of cinnamon and nutmeg are wafting through the cabin. I am amazed at all that you do. Jamie sounds so cute; how wonderful that he enjoys cooking and is learning from his grandma/master. Many of my friends over 65 have received the vaccine here in California. I am hoping to get mine in April, depending on the availability. I am 56, so will have to wait a bit. I love stockpiling. It's too bad that so many people confuse it with hoarding. My mom always had one extra of everything in our cupboards, so we never ran out of anything. She was so disciplined and organized.

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    1. I like to make and do as much as I can, Stephenie. It gives structure to my days and there will come a time when I won't be able to do what I can do now, so why not. Your apple crisp sounds delicious. The vaccines arrived in Australia yesterday and they'll be given to frontline workers and the residents in elderly care facilities first. Hanno and I will probably be in the batch after that so we'll go along and have our jabs when we're notified. Take care, love.

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  18. I really like that cutlery tray, I may see if I can find something like that. We've just added a handful of iced tea spoons my MIL didn't want (so handy for stirring things in quart jars, like the sourdough starter I just fed), and there wasn't room for them in the tray so now they're just sort of rattling around in the drawer next to it with some other extra utensils that didn't fit in the tray.

    We're still mostly staying at home...my in-laws are older and were able to get their vaccines, so that's a positive. And my high-risk husband will supposedly be eligible next month, but of course that depends on availability and being able to get an appointment, which has been next to impossible for many older people in my state (website and phone lines are apparently jammed all the time with people trying to schedule an appointment). I'll feel better once he's had his vaccines--we'll still be careful, of course, especially since we can't vaccinate the kids (they're not doing anyone younger than 16 here, I think, guessing it's similar everywhere else), but once I don't have to worry quite so much about my husband I think my stress level will go down a bit. And then whenever they open up appointments to the rest of us I'll start trying to get mine as well.

    I just attempted sauerkraut again. I've made it twice--the first time it was delicious, the second time I don't think it fermented correctly, since it spoiled--and I'm hoping this batch turns out. Also just fed my sourdough starter so I can bake bread tomorrow. And I need to go into the freezer to figure out what needs to be used up, so maybe I'll bake some strawberry muffins or something tomorrow as well, as it's almost time for us to go pick berries again and I want to get the last of the frozen ones used up. Outside of our usual homeschooling, tomorrow is shaping up to be full of cooking and laundry, which doesn't sound very exciting but always makes me feel like I've accomplished something. It's nearly spring here and we're trying to enjoy the last of the pretty weather before the live oaks start pollinating (which chases us indoors, as we're allergic), so I'm hoping to get outside some as well.

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