Weekend Reading and Home

25 September 2021
Hello everyone!  It's Saturday morning here, I've just come back from doing a small top-up grocery shop, and now I'm here at the screen with the fan on. It's a big football weekend here and I noticed a lot of men at the supermarket, with their children, shopping for BBQ and snack foods. Lots of steaks, sausages, salads, crackers, cheese, soft drinks, lollies and whatever else to fill bellies when they have their long awaited football grand final parties later today.  I hope the mums were still in bed having a sleep in but I'm guessing they were up getting the house ready for guests.

I closed the gate behind me when I came home and I'm looking forward to a quiet day with Hanno and Gracie. If there is any excitement here today it might be a movie later this afternoon but it could also be just pottering around in the garden watching the birds.


I'm getting used to the warmer temperatures and even though I know just how hot and humid it will be in a few months, at the moment it feels good to be warming up. So, what have I done this week?  Well, apart from the regular cooking, cleaning and gardening, I cleaned some kitchen drawers, got rid of some  drinking glasses but I still need to reorganise my tea towel and dishcloth drawer. I'll do that next week.

Assorted bowls and lids. I use old crockery lids and silicone lids for the many bowls I use.


I changed the face of the blog using the photo above from the lounge room. I'm currently working on adding an emailing service to the blog for those who wish to subscribe via email. Google stopped the last one we had in July. That will be up soon.


We ate lots of delicious local strawberries, I used up some dried apricots in the cupboard by making a custard and apricot slice and made a cinnamon tea cake when Sunny and Jamie came over for morning tea. During the week our meals have been mushroom omelettes, spinach ravioli in vegetable broth, corned beef, cabbage and potatoes and yesterday, corned beef hash. Today's lunch will be roast chicken with coleslaw and green salad with apricot and custard slice for dessert.

I hope you and your family are well and staying safe. When I'm out in the garden I often think about the regulars who come here and I wonder what you're doing. I know many countries are still struggling with Covid, as are we in parts of Australia.  Wherever you are, I send love and hope that things will improve soon as more people are vaccinated.

Weekend Reading

24 comments

  1. Sounds like a lovely weekend. Summer has stretched into a warm fall. My tomatoes are still producing like crazy. I’ve put up salsa, pizza sauce, roasted tomato soup, tomato halves, and some sauce. I’ve also put up some pickles, vegetable soup, and some relishes. I don’t often comment but read here regularly. Covid is rearing it’s ugly head again in our area. My boss lost his wife to it a couple weeks ago. Stay safe everyone!

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  2. Hi Rhonda,

    I'm glad you are enjoying lovely weather. Here in Armidale it is heavenly. I'm spending many, many hours in the garden and loving every minute of it. We still have a fire for a few hours each day but it is definitely warming up a little more each week.

    Madeleine.X

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  3. Thank you for the links today, have a lovely weekend....Nes

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  4. Thank you Rhonda! I always love to read what has been happening in your world. I have had a lovely day pottering around at home with no outside commitments which is a welcome change. I made your chicken curry for dinner as it is always popular in our home. Enjoy the coming week.

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  5. Good day, sweet Rhonda. Glad to know you will be safe and sound at home this weekend. We are starting to experience the crisp, coolness of autumn and relishing every bit of it. I'll be out in the garden, spreading a load of wood chips over the pathways in order to keep the weeds at bay. I have a bit of tending to do at a neighbor's, as she does not like to get dirty. Imagine! ;0P
    Thank you as always for the list of good reads. May you and yours be blessed.

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  6. Like you I have odd plates and bowls. I have bought them at thrift stores or found them in the recycle shed at the dump. I like to use them for certain things, like boiled eggs in a striped blue bowl or sliced tomatoes on an oval floral plate. I feel a connection to the past in them and I want them to be used until they are broken and not just discarded because they are no longer matched or fashionable.
    We have been given many bushels of sweet red apples from a friend's yard and have been making dried apples (using our sauna) and no sugar applesauce. I made sauerkraut for the first time and was surprised how easy it is to make. It goes through a stinky stage but then is finished fermentation and is ready to bottle.
    A wet fall has brought on masses of wild mushrooms. After many years of study and spore tests and sampling, I finally can identify the edibles in the field and have frozen chanterelles, spreading hedgehogs and birch scaberstalks. These are all tasty mushrooms.
    We've had our second covid vaccines and feel more confident about being out now but will continue to mask and distance.
    I enjoyed reading 'Fit for a purpose' as I like to adapt clothing.
    Enjoy your spring weekend!

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  7. First thing I noticed was your lovely lounge. I love the color combinations. Here in KY USA we are now into fall with leaves falling and cooler days. My garden is almost finished, but I have some newly ripening tomatoes from a second planting. Green peppers are hanging from the plants waiting to be picked and diced for the freezer. Jars of peaches, pickles, tomatoes, green beans, etc are on the shelves waiting to be used this winter along with meats in the freezer. It's a good feeling to provide for our family.

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  8. Your poor country, Rhonda! I've been watching the news and it seems like Australia is imploding with every passing minute. I am keeping all of you in my prayers. I often have the same feeling when I shut my curtains for the evening... I feel like I'm shutting the world out, as I'm guessing you do too when you shut your gate. Those strawberries... how luscious they look!!! Have a beautiful weekend. ~Andrea xoxoxo

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  9. Hi!
    I spy a small floral dish!
    It is the same as my Nan’s set, which I was given after she passed away. When we had the bushfires in 2019/2020 I grabbed two dinner plates, a bowl and two of the mugs from the set to rescue, just in case the worst happened (thankfully it didn’t).

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  10. Good morning Rhonda, Hanno and Gracie. Love the photo of your living room! Yes locked in still down here. Miss seeing the grandies and its school holidays as well! Weather has been cool and damp so all our cupboards are getting a good sort out,not much of a footy watcher but glad that it gave families some distraction they could engage with together. Our thoughts are with those who are struggling and can't go out to work. We also had a very big earthquake which is was a first down here and luckily didn't cause too much damage and no injuries reported but was certainly my new experience of the week and all from my armchair!! Have a safe,happy week🙃

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    1. Jenny, I hope you see your grandkids soon. I understand what you must be feeling. xx

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  11. Julie from MooroolbarkSeptember 26, 2021 9:40 pm

    Hello Rhonda. Hope all is well in your beautiful corner of Australia. Wow what a week. As previously mentioned "an earthquake" of 5.9 gave us here an all mighty shake. 40 - 50 seconds long and I admit it had me worried. Upon inspection after, all was well and I had to refill all the water bird dishes as they emptied. What was most interesting and a little worrying was the families of birds did not visit for over 24 hours - in fact no birds. A first - they must have known all was not well. We have had numerous after shocks but none to cause any bother.

    Still in lockdown 6 and with very high daily numbers I am happy to plan little projects which keep the day ticking along at home. My neighbour popped a lovely pattern of a friendship blanket knitted or crocheted with the accompanying variety of patterns with the same square size in my mail box. What a wonderful way to use left over yarn. We have decided to trade some of these squares with each other when achieved so that we will eventually have a blanket each we have both contributed too.

    Beautiful photos this week and those strawberries magnificent. I always look forward to the weekend reading suggestions and my reading list on my computer now looms large.

    Have a wonderful week with all you plan and do and looking out right now at our clear sky you would never know the unsettled times we are experiencing here in Melbourne. I am so fortunate to live on the outskirts where the air is clean and the stars are bright and tonight a predicted 2 degrees so cozying up indoors. Julie xx

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    1. That's a nice project you have going with your neighbour, Julie. The world has become quite unpredictable, hasn't it. We are lucky to have our safe havens to protect us.

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  12. That looks pretty. Your meals sound hearty and delicious. I had my second vaccine on Thursday. It's a relief to have them both done. California now has 77% of the people vaccinated, and we have the lowest number of cases in the US. I am still very cautious, though. Am planning to try out the new wood stove tonight. It's starting to get colder here. I love the smell and feel of wood for heat...

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    1. It sounds like your vaccinations are going really well. We started slow and our state is now at about 45% but we don't have any cases at the moment . When we have new cases, they're usually from overseas and already in quarantine. I love wood stoves, enjoy yours, Stephenie. xx

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  13. I love your lounge room wall, the shelves with the frames and Knick knacks look lovely! I haven’t commented in some time, but wanted to wish Hanno a late happy birthday. I’m in Melbourne and I believe we’ve got 40 days left of restrictions, based on their vaccine predictions. I’m thankful to still have some part time work (disability support so always essential), and are taking time to dive into outdoor projects. We paved our decking area and I’ve been working on raising seeds (cherry tomatoes and zucchini), which I tried for the first time last year due to lockdown. Watching them grow and change is somewhat of a thrill, I’m not sure if I’ll go back to Bunnings as much after lockdown 😂 Thankyou for continuing to share your lives. - Larissa in Pakenham (Melbourne)

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    1. Thanks Larissa. Hanno reads all the comments so he'll see your birthday wishes this afternoon. It sounds like you've made the most of your lockdown and learnt some handy skills. Well done! xx

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  14. Lovely change to the blog, Rhonda, I love that sitting room picture. It looks very comfy and cozy in there. Those strawberries are too much. What beautiful fruit; and I would bet they are wonderful tasting. Thanks for all the great links, and have a pleasant week.

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  15. Your new blog head is so nice. IT makes me want to sit and have a chat!

    I agree with the article on a diet high in dairy fat and heart disease. After my husband's brain injury we were told that he has to eat a diet high in fat to help his brain function. We did that and changed to lots of butter and whole fat milk and cream in recipes as freely as we wanted. Our cholesterol and triglyceride number corrected in one year. We had both fought with those numbers for many years and fixing it was so easy but not at all what we had been told by our doctors.

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    1. I agree with that article too. I never changed from full cream milk or butter. Hanno did and he struggled with his triglyceride and cholesterol for many years, mine is always normal, still is now. I'm really pleased to know it made such a good difference for you too.

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  16. Here in Florida, USA, Covid cases are still high (though I did read recently that they're starting to drop...hoping that continues) and while my husband and I are vaxed my kids aren't yet (not old enough) so we continue to stay home when we can and to be as careful as possible when we do go out. It's still hot here, but we're having some drier, breezy days which make it feel a tiny bit like fall--and I think we're all eagerly anticipating the first cold front. We've got our fall garden started and will probably continue to add things for a while (we like to stagger the planting of some things). I just opened up the last jar of pear jam from a huge batch I made 2 years ago, so I've got that on my list of things to make/preserve this fall. My youngest (almost 9 yo) has really been enjoying cooking and baking with me lately, which has been fun. He decided he wanted to learn to cook and at first he thought you had to memorize how to make everything (because the first thing he learned to make was scrambled eggs, which don't really require a recipe), and was worried about how he'd keep it all in his head to make when he was grown up. He was quite relieved to learn that there are recipes for almost anything he'd want to make, so it's about learning techniques, not memorizing specific recipes. :)

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  17. The black cockatoo story is great, I shared it with a lot of people! We get all three black cockatoo species here on our land, and only after years were we taught how to easily recognize the Baudin from the Carnaby, without fail.
    You simply look at the Marri nuts that they eat and drop, and you can tell from the bite marks which one you've got!

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  18. Your lounge looks so lovely and inviting on that photo Rhonda. Classically timeless too, which is always a plus I think. It´s not so generally known but Sweden is a nation of trends - in furnishing, food, clothing - you name it. I shudder when I see headlines like "Autumn trends in interior decorating"and take pleasure in ignoring them. At the same time though there´s a major "trend" towards not constantly buying new things. That´s a good one!

    We had a lovely slow weekend with not as much work done as we had hoped. The weather and autumn colours in the garden were too wonderful not to relax and enjoy. Already we´re entering a grey week with no sight of the sun. During our coffee break in the greenhouse on our sunny Sunday, we were rewarded with the wonderful sight of a sparrowhawk plunging from nowhere in an attempt to capture one of a group of birds having a bath in our pond. He missed and almost turned upside down to change flight direction. As far as I could see he had bad luck. It´s the 3-4 time he´s raided out garden. It´s perfect for his hunting style which is to fly over and through bushes at lightning speed. It´s also perfect for little birds to quickly disappear in the greenery or fly off to neighbouring trees. Nature is wonderful.

    Yes, full fat milk, butter and cream in our household too. We don´t use a lot though but want full flavour in what we eat. All those "light" products. I read somewhere that zero calory CocaCola is not at all a good choice for dieters. Not that we´d touch those drinks with a barge pole. Our children were never offered them at home either. Mind you, I think they realised the neighbour always had fizzy drinks on hand on Fridays.....

    At the end of this month, all official restrictions due to Corona, will be lifted. Double vaccination numbers are very high. Over 65:s more than 90% and other groups high too. At the same time, there´s an increase in the number of cases with the new strains. Very few need intensive care though which is a blessing for the hospitals staffs. There is talk of a third vaccination for those in the high-risk group. We shall see....

    Keep well and take care
    Ramona

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    1. Thanks Ramona. My grandmother on my fathers side was Swedish, they came to Australia in the late 1800s. After I had my DNA done on Ancestry I discovered I also had a number of Norwegian great-grandparents, so I think the simple Scandinavian style is in my blood. I'm glad to read that you've cosied up in your home with coffee in the green house. Stay well. xx

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