The little birds...

If you watch little birds you will see they are busy and happy! Using whatever they can find they create the most gorgeous little nest.
I would be the little bird with some glittery thread in her nest!
We can be like this. Happily working away with the things that are available to us to create a beautiful and happy home.
All the while with a little song in our heart.

Banner by Free Pretty Things for You.

Thursday, 15 November 2018

Feather your Nest Friday, 16th November 2018.

It has been a really good week!  And a busy one with all our Show and Tell posts included!  There is still another one coming too!

The biggest thing would be that we settled the sale of our house!  And I completely finished unpacking the very last things that we brought home at the last minute.  (And everything else as well.)

Also I came home with rosemary cuttings and I dug up little bits of violets to plant under my roses at the farm.  So that is it for the old house!

I am heading to the city today just for one night.  Chloe and I are going together!  She is Christmas shopping.  I will see the girls and do a grocery shop and have a few appointments.  Anyway it is good fun just having girl time.

Some of the ways I feathered my nest this week included:

I made two impossible pies with several cartons of cream I got for 40c. Bargain!  This made a dinner and most of the weeks lunches.  For impossible pie I just add some gluten free flour. This saves needing pastry.  So easy.


If I see cream on special I buy it and freeze it.  Once I had Harper with me and she was pushing one of those little kids trolleys.  There were cartons of cream for 8c!  So I started putting them into her trolley since she likes to be in charge. After about ten she said "Nan Nan Bel I think that is enough cream..." haha 

We had a big day with our ride on mower being delivered!  


This is such a good thing. It is not just to keep things nice but also for the purpose of fire season, snake safety etc.  Andy got a little trailer also to pick up wood for our fireplace.

I have been watering the fruit trees.   The fruit is growing!  The mystery tree is an apple I think...


Whatever it is I hope the fruit is good as there are THOUSANDS of them.

We invested in bird netting.  This was an adventure.  It involved ladders, poles, cooperation and a lot of muttering...  but we did it!


This is a pretty big tree... around four or five meters high!  So you can imagine the fun of this. We decided this should be an olympic sport as it would be hilarious to watch!

Meanwhile we rescued a baby cockatoo one evening as it fell out of the nest. It was almost ready to fly. We interfered as Magpies we attacking it.  The next day the parents came looking for it and we put it back on the lawn and they fed him.  We watched all of this all day to see if he was going to be alright!   On the third day finally he flew!  Who needs TV?

Also we relocated our own bird into a big old cage that we found in the shed. We planned this but it was too heavy to move until Luke came and helped.


Luke always looks like he is having fun... because he is!  But truly he is so helpful!
I did make him a chocolate thank you cake.


My niece is rising "good laying hens" in her ag class at school which is also a school fundraiser as they then sell them.  I ordered five.  Five of these are coming my way when they are old enough...


They are kind of strawberry blonde!  They are at that awkward teenage stage...


I gave myself a hair trim.

I made up a bunch of essential oil gifts.  Apart from moving house learning about essential oils would be the best thing I did this year.  It is a life changer.  Health wise it made a huge difference.  

I made beauty serum for a friend.  I use this and love it.  In a small bottle I put Emu oil then I add a few drops of Lavender, Frankincense and Geranium.  That's it!  I copied this from a website where they charged $50 for it!  It is lovely and deeply moisturising.



Then I made my copy of Clary Calm which I use coconut oil (the type that stays a liquid) in 10ml roller bottles.  I get these from eBay.  To this I add Clary Sage, Lavender, Bergamot, Chamomile, Cedarwood, Ylang Ylang and Geranium.   Generally I do ten drops of essential oils to 10mls of oil.  This is a bit flexible.  This blend is divine and so relaxing.   I basically wear this every day.

I made myself a hair treatment oil.  I added Lavender, Rosemary, Tea Tree, Sage, and Ylang Ylang to Castor oil.   When I do a treatment I use this on my scalp.  I have a thing about having thick hair...



I made several that were already purchased blends i.e. On Guard,  Console, Germ Fighter... just adding ten drops to my 10ml roller bottles and labelling these.

Then I made my ULTIMATE sleep blend.  I made this up and now re make it often.
It is coconut oil and add several drops of each of Lavender, Vetiver, Chamomile, Ylang Ylang, Bergamot, Sandalwood, Cedarwood....  It is divine!  I think I am addicted to this!  If I wake up in the night I rub it on my wrists and it is genuinely dreamy.

This all gave me several gifts.  Some I used my little boxes Lynette gave me and some went into little purses.  When you have all the oils on hand it makes it so easy to make beautiful gifts.  
I have a Home Pharmacy section in my index, there are lots of posts on Essential oils in there.  You can get very good priced excellent quality oils!  And they go a very very long way aS they need to be strongly diluted.  
Next year I hope to post much more about oils.  Now I have some essential oil jewellery so I will cover that down the track.

A really good thing happened toward our preparedness.  I contacted one of our neighbours who is on a property out the back of us.   It is someone I used to know years ago!   She knew my voice instantly and she sounded just the same too!   We exchanged numbers and caught up.  We came to an agreement to help each other out.  If she is going to town and I need something she will get it.  If I go to town I will ask her what she needs. She is caring for her elderly Mum.   Also in the case of a fire we need to be in close communication. This is so good. She is so lovely and now I have a friend nearby! 

My garden has grown so much!  I have loads of baby tomatoes, the rhubarb is growing, the spinach and silver beet is almost worth picking.   Ten weeks ago there was no garden at all!  


I will do another wave of planting yet. I have Jane's seeds in pots.  Once they are big enough I will find spots for them.  I always find Basil doesn't do well until after Christmas so I will put in a lot more later.



If I go away for one or two days I can see things have grown when I get back.  Things grow fast!

I strung up loads of outdoor solar family lights.  I love them! 

So that is pretty much my week.  It is a beautiful day today, perfect Spring. 

How did you build up your home, preparedness, pantry or savings this week?
Have a wonderful weekend!  
I know I have at least one more Show and Tell to post yet as well! xxx









Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Catching up with Show and Tell, Part 4.

This has been a very interesting Show and Tell so far!  Thank you everyone!  Today we are touching on some other ways that our crafting impacts others...

First we have Fiona.  She is crafty!  Actually she has a blog www.sawitdidit.wordpress.com with loads of ideas.   She had a fundraising event to attend and her table won best of the evening as Fiona set them all up with Shrek headbands (and everyone wore green...)


Fiona, herself, was Princess Fiona...


This would have been so much fun!    Also she coined the phrase "Elegant Swap" as a look! lol

I have followed Fiona over the years.  Every book week she has created something amazing for her son.  This year he was a space ship...


 Mum of the year!!  She assembled this from a borrowed umbrella, boxes found on the road side and battery operated lights!  Yes it has lights!    So our crafty skills help in all kinds of situations and not just gift giving.    It might be saving money,  fund raising, costumes, there are so many times when being prepared to be creative pays off!

They also help us help others as Maria G demonstrates.   She wanted to help a charity she loves to support so she made up something for their trading table...


These are for when sewing and I think useful for when crocheting or knitting as well.  I expect they sold like hot cakes! 

She also made little Christmas stocking ornaments...


And she completed a blanket using yarn that she already had. 


Beautiful work Maria!  

My Mum sends heaps of warm items she has knitted to an orphanage in Romania.  There are many places crying out for warm items.   Many hospitals welcome hats for preemie babies,  many organisations distribute warm clothes for the needy. I mentioned once how Mum was watching the news and they interviewed a man who was homeless and he was talking about how he had been helped by a certain charity.  He was wearing a beanie Mum had knitted!   She thought "there's my hat!"     So if you have yarn and are not sure what to do... bless someone! 

I know there is at least a part five coming!  If you would like to share your work from during the year email me at brinkzi21@hotmail.com  
Thank you for all the amazing comments so far! xxx




Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Catching up with Show and Tell, Part 3.

I had a beautiful email that made my day.  I will share some of it with you as this post has so many lovely ideas and is very motivating!  It has me planning for January in the new year!

So over to Alison and Rebecca from New Zealand...

We are two mums who have followed your blog for years and have been so inspired by the idea of making presents through the year to have a stash ready to give away by Christmas.  So for the last couple of years we have got together every second week for a “crafty Tuesday” to research, make and create gifts to give.  This year we have really been motivated to put extra effort into the presentation of the finished products and especially the wrapping, aiming for a look worthy of a high-priced product from a fancy boutique.



First is some of the cards we made that we made into packs to give away (inspired by you!)


Second is some of the soy candles we made and various presentation ideas we have (all made from card that was rescued from being dumped).




Third is muslin infinity scarf (on the left) and a merino scarf on the right that is so wonderfully warm.




Fourth is a selection of hand made lip balm – we found sparkly buckles and made the boxes ourselves!





Fifth is some of the creamy soaps we made which smell just beautiful.






Sixth are handmade lotion bars – just gorgeous on dry or cracked skin.




And lastly is a selection of reusable food containers – the spotty one is a sandwich wrap which works brilliantly and the little bags are little snack bags – brilliant for taking something little to school.  Both are made of washable food-safe PUL and will be filled with hand made treats like spicy almonds for teacher’s presents.




These are all wonderful gifts and beautifully presented!  
Alison and Rebecca you should be proud!  Thank you so much for saying hello, telling me you are reading and sharing all of this.  Some days I wonder if I should put so much time into the blog.  When I hear from people with emails like this I am so glad I do and it makes my day!

There are so many ideas here.  Many of us work best with a buddy.  Getting together with a friend or a group is a great way to get more done.   I know Cath and Wendy go to card making days together.  You get to chat, craft, exchange materials... sometimes we have too much of one thing and do a trade!    Also you are sharing ideas and skills.   
Also... what a contrast to expensive lunch dates or shopping dates.  Rather than spending money you are saving it.   It is just as much fun if not more!  
I used to go to an embroidery class that was a lot of ladies who would come together around a big kitchen table to embroider.  It was wonderful.  
Later on when the girls were bigger we would have other girls over for craft days and they would all sit and work on a craft.  Our place became a bit of a hit amongst friends.   Once I had about eight other kids over and taught them all chocolate making and they all took home a bag of chocolates they had made.  They loved it. 
Once a year my friend would come and stay for a few days.  The girls, Margarete and I would sit and craft a series of things we could use as gifts.  We would cook , make cards, create.  Margarete would go home with a whole car load of gifts, packing, cards, baking... she would be set for Christmas.  We had so much fun doing this!  The girls loved it too.  They were always so proud to give things they had made.

If you don't have a friend who would craft with you maybe you could find a group to join or find an online friend who will join you in your challenge... once a week share with each other what you have been making.  Or join in here!  In January I will start The Christmas Challenge again and we can all check in with our progress and creations.  Encouragement does make a difference.  Deadlines made a difference to me... if I know I need a photo by Friday I will get on with what I am making!  

There is still time to do a lot of creating before Christmas.  Then in January we will hit the ground running again! xxx





Monday, 12 November 2018

Getting back to Show and Tell part 2.

Thank you to everyone who has commented on Kelley's gorgeous work.  I think we are all inspired!

Todays Show and Tell is to share two Bluebirds work!

First we have Marilyn.   Marilyn has shared lots in earlier show and tell posts and she makes things for herself, gifts and Grandchildren.  She passed on her admiration of Kelleys sewing too!

Marilyn really wanted new night clothes but was finding the price of pure cotton that she prefers really expensive.  She got thinking and found a duvet cover she was no longer using was 100% pure cotton and pretty prints.  In fact one side was a contrast print to the other side.

So from one side she made herself pyjamas...


And the other side became a nightie...



Marilyn feels cool and comfy and they are so pretty.  Well done!
I asked her if she minds being on the blog in her nightie and she said no... she is not wanted by the police and maybe she will get discovered by Victorias Secret!

Since our first email she has found crochet cotton in the thrift store so she is set to do some edgings on towels.

Thanks so much Marilyn for sharing.  Fabric can be expensive as yarn can be also.   But we can beat this!  
Sheeting is also perfect for children's pyjamas, table linen, curtains, little dresses (as Kelley showed) and so many things.  I watch out always for 100% cotton sheets in pretty prints.  Thrift stores have me stocked up with reels of cotton, embroidery thread, sewing yarn, pattens, buttons and laces.  All these things are worth putting into your sewing cupboard.

Now to Barb.  Barb has been card making and she also has made cards to give away to help others at Christmas.   The gift of cards in a pack or to use is a great gift!


She also made her first sale!!  Congratulations Barb!  The many benefits of crafting!


The other benefits certainly include joy.  It is hard to think bad thoughts when working on something beautiful.  It just does us good!

Well done Barb I love your cards! 

Now I am just working on Show and Tell part 3.  Wait until you see what is next!

If you would like to share your work we would LOVE to see.  Email me at brinkzi21@hotmail.com

The week is going well!  Our ride on lawn mower is being delivered!  What a help this will be!  And we got two 10 x 10 meter nets for the two biggest fruit trees!  Progress...

xxx



Sunday, 11 November 2018

Getting back to Show and Tell at last!

With our move I had to leave Show and Tell for a while!  But now to catch up.  On Friday I gave my details if you would like to share what you have been making, cooking, creating etc please share.  We could all use some inspiration and ideas.   We might see something and realise we could make that!  We have the materials for a project...   Previous Show and Tell posts have had so many good ideas.
Also it is a JOY seeing what people do with their hands.  I love it!
Busy hands make happy hearts... it is true!

For the next few weeks I will add a Show and Tell as I can.   We are starting with Kelley!  A while back we took a look at some craft and inspiration rooms.   Kelley shared her room which you can see here.   I think if you want to get the full picture have a look at the space Kelley first created for herself and how she did it!

It is worth noting Kelley travels a lot.  She has had a very busy year for many reasons.  Yet take a look...

This is a little dress she made for her Grand Daughter....


The body of the dress is made from a bed sheet.  The hem is made from another flat sheet.
The little pockets say "His" and "Hers" and are made from old His and Her pillowcases.   😍
The little collar is made from a doily! 


It is tied at the back with a huge pink bow.   Oh my goodness!


Kelley has another Grand Daughter on the way!  So she is sewing away....

First a quilt... also made from old bed sheets...


I love the colours and vintage prints!

This is another little dress... this one made from a jumper.  I think jumper means something different in the US... i.e. a pinafore.  Well I THINK so!  Someone help me out with that.  In any instance it is recycled from a garment that Kelley got in the thrift store.


It has Mother of Pearl buttons highlighting both the bodice and the hem line.  So sweet! 

Kelley is now working initials onto the Dedication Gown for her new Grand Daughter...


Again so special and so personal.

And there is a special Bib to go with it...



Kelley made a series of dolls for a baby...


I especially love the hair bows!  And that each one is so individual!  

And finally a little jacket for her Grand Daughter.  Her daughter loves yellows and mustards, being a red head like her Mum!   I note one of the little dolls above is a red head too!


Thank you Kelley so much for sharing your work!  It made my day.  I love that you use so many recycled bits and pieces and reinvent things.  I love the beauty, creativity and economy of what you make.  It is all so gorgeous and wayyyy beyond anything you can get in the stores.  They are all heirlooms and speak of a Grand Mothers love.

This has me thinking about my new year plans and dreams.  Moving is done.  I have my garden planted.  Hot weather will be coming where I will need to do things quietly inside for days and days.  I will start sewing and get my craft room set up.   I am so lucky to have a craft room now!   Saying that this is a bonus but we do not have to have a special room to create.  I used to sew in the lounge room on a side table for a long time!  And hand sewing can be done anywhere.   We can do something that is for sure!  

I hope you are inspired too!  
If you would like to participate in Show and Tell email me at brinkzi21@hotmail.com
Have a good new week!  I enjoyed Sunday.  I got out my planner and thought over my week.  We got off to a good start with some rest too! xxx












Thursday, 8 November 2018

Feather your Nest Friday, 9th November 2018.

What a week!   I really could use a "normal" week about now!  The last few days I was in the city and  yesterday the last thing I did at the house was mop the floors, leave all the keys on the counter and pull the door she behind me!  It is all done and today is settlement.   I just have to wait and hope that all takes place ok and I get a phone call to confirm later.

We had two cars loaded up with all the last odds and ends.   I still had all kinds of stuff in the cellar.  I think I went up and down those stairs a hundred times!
There were a few potted plants and my garden angel and bird baths.  Now they are home here.  My angel is down under the trees down at the bottom of the yard.


The bird baths went under two low branches where lorikeets gather every night.  I can't wait until they discover them and they become a busy place in the garden!

So back to the beginning.  We had a fairly peaceful weekend here and I did some cooking getting ready for the Adelaide trip.   I made carrot cake up as little cakes to take the girls.


I made another batch that was gluten free.  And I iced the ones for the girls with yellow icing by special request from Harper.



The garden is really growing.  I rescued some plants that came up out in the chook yard.  Eight were obviously sweet corn and I guess the others were zucchini.   My four little bantams didn't even eat them as the chook house is so big so I dug them up carefully and added them to the veggie patch! 

I set up my spice cabinet.   This took a while as it is a whole cupboard of its own.

I had a beautiful parcel from Jane in my mail box!   She sent me all kinds of seeds from her garden!


She makes the envelopes herself and they are gorgeous!    I will be planting lots of these seeds this afternoon.  Also I thought this is a lovely gift idea for all the gardeners amongst us and a perfect gift for the mail!  Thank you Jane!

Down in our little rabbit proof paddock there are three big old fruit trees. 



They are pretty big trees. 


 Everyone has told me they don't fruit including the people who used to live here.   But I noticed they all were covered in blossoms that is for sure! They were beautiful!   So I went and had a close inspection.   They are all covered in baby fruit! 


So I think I have two types of pears...


And something else... ???


Happy dance! 
In Adelaide I got some bird netting.  And one of the hoses we brought back can drip bore water onto these trees in rotation.  I already got that going.

We decided we are getting geese for this paddock because they will keep it mowed,  deter snakes and act as guard dogs and let us know of anyone coming or going towards our house.   I am so excited about this!

Today I have loads of unpacking to do.  There is stuff everywhere!   But so much of it will add to my various pantries....  there are cans of food,  lanterns, batteries, candles,  laundry items etc.

How did you build up your home this week?   I hope it was a good week for you.
Take the time to consider your week and take time over the weekend to plan the new one.  My plan for today is just to get as much done as I can!  

Because of moving I have not had a Show and Tell for ages.  I am planning some now though!  If you would like to share what you have been making then please send me photos and details to brinkzi21@hotmail.com   This could be really helpful and inspiring as there is still time to make a lot for Christmas!  It can be anything including cooking.  Cooking can be a wonderful gift.
I will start posting these as extra posts over the next weeks! xxx




Friday, 2 November 2018

Feather your Nest Friday, 2nd November. 2018.

I am sorry I am late posting.  I am sitting up in bed writing as I had left my computer in Adelaide and Andy collected it today for me!  opps!  This means I owe some replies still and I will catch up over the weekend.
So where to even start!?  
First of all can you believe it's NOVEMBER.  We are so close to Christmas and the end of the year.  What a whirlwind.

Mum is out of hospital.  She had eight days there which is quite a while by todays standards.   Now she is home.  She could do with some prayers as she has a lot of pain.  Antibiotics fixed her infection but a bulging disk doesn't get better fast and her leg pain is really endless.  Mum is also used to being super active and this has really hit her hard.

Next bit of news... our house sale was due to settle at the end of the month.  Yesterday we had a call that the buyers would love to bring it forward to next Friday!   We just said yes... but this means a lot to do with paperwork, having the house ready to hand over in one week.  Really there is not much left to bring here... I just like to leave things sparkling!
This is also very exciting.  Things we have been dreaming of doing... like a ride on mower,  fire season sprinklers etc we can do!!!
I have been thinking what a big year this has been.  Soon I will talk about the year from a preparedness point of view.  The things we can do now will really add to this area as well.

Every week we have a day or two in the city to see the girls, upkeep the garden and keep things tidy.
Before I left I made a couple of very healthy banana cakes full of left over homemade yoghurt, double the bananas the recipe said and the last of the eggs I have been using up.


One was for the Lucy and the girls and one for us. 
On the way to the city Lucy called saying Harper was suddenly really ill and they think she might have pneumonia.  I felt sick.   It turned out to be bronchitis and an ear infection.  Thankfully once they worked this out she recovered so quickly... and even ate a heap of cake!

I picked lots of roses from my old garden, thinking they would be wasted.  I have some on my bedside table and some drying for cake and coconut ice decorations.


We achieved clean gutters!  Seriously the gutters had not been done in years.  We also did the smaller houses near us and the big shed.   This all was like compost some of it rich and black.   I thought ok I will use this on the veggie patch!


If this is a nice sight to you then you are obviously a gardener! 😊

The roses we planted just a few weeks ago are flowering!! They look so nice and make such a difference to the strip they are planted in.  Even my Dad said how they are perfect for that spot.


Two things I need to add in... I had a wonderful parcel from Sue.  A beautiful country cookbook that is so good and a book of slow cooker recipes.  I am loving these thank you Sue.

And Jacqui... Jacqui has made quilts for both Harper and Scarlett. They are treasured by Lucy and will be kept forever.   Chloe found a parcel in her post box down the track at the front gate!  It was a wedding quilt! 
This is a totally inadequate picture but all I have just now... it is the soft colours that Chloe loves and includes vintage feed sacks.  I had to explain to Chloe how floral vintage feed sacks came to be.  I nearly cried explaining it....   It has extensive hand embroidery and is just amazing.  We are both so touched by such a gift.


Jacqui your kindness and generosity are beautiful. Thank you.

During the week we had a visitor in the driveway.  


I took a video of him walking along. It is on instagram and FB.  The girls thought he was hilarious when I showed this to them.   I think it is the way they walk like the kind of wobble side to side.

The birds are getting much tamer.  I am starting to get some photos now.... hopefully soon I can take many.  Each week they are less wary of us.


This trip to the city, with the house now sold, we could collect our furniture!  You don't know how excited I am about this.  All this time we had a bed and a plastic table and two plastic chairs!  To sell the house and have it look nice I left all my best things, vases, flowers, plant, linen, furniture... 
So we hired a truck and loaded up!   We only got back Thursday and unloaded.  So since then I have been putting things in place and having a lovely time.
It all looks so nice!  I have plants and flowers, my dining table and chairs...  yay!

I also have my fridge/freezer!!!  Now I can do so much!  Before we turned it off to shift I only had four items left in there.  Two packets of sausages and two packets of pastry.  They went into the eski with the cold groceries. 
When I got home they had started to thaw.  So today guess what I made?  Twenty one sausage rolls! 
Chloe and Luke are extremely busy with shearing.  Overtired I would say.   So I took them a dozen and added a slab of chocolate brownies.   Luke (despite all this) came and helped unload the truck.   I wanted to make him something.


(Cooked sausage rolls, some about to go into the oven, finished brownies...) 



Whenever I use ready made pastry there are always odds and ends left over.  This time I made a jam tart.


I used some strawberry jam I made in summer.   So nothing was wasted!

It is so nice to realise how much we did this week!  And next week is shaping up to be very busy.  This all will help us so much though.  I worried I would have to look after two gardens, three hours apart, for a summer.  It would have been so hard.  In a week I will be able to concentrate on one house and one garden.  We will have the house funds early as well.  I think this is all the result of so much prayer as it is truly amazing to have it all so soon.  We are so grateful.

How did you build up your home this week?  There are so many aspects to feathering your nest.  An extra meal in the freezer,  something to add to the pantry,  something you made that saved you money,  getting things done!  It all adds up.  It is amazing!

With Christmas coming we still have plenty of time.  I get ready for lots of baking in December.  The Christmas cakes are already made and wrapped.  I am glad I started making and collecting gifts in January! I saw I have plenty of wrapping paper that I got on a huge sale after last Christmas and it is gorgeous!  I have a lot of ribbons saved so I am ok there too.

With things settling down I am hoping to do a Show and Tell so we can share gift ideas, baking and packaging ideas with still enough time to do some of them!  So get your photos ready!

Have a wonderful weekend! xxx