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, 20 September 2018

The second week at Bluebirds Farmhouse.

Our second week at the farmhouse has been as big as the first!  Every day is an adventure!
We started the week back in the city.  We had the house ready for inspections and then I had time with the girls and we did things like the grocery shop to ring back to the farm and I got my first flowering garden plants to begin the garden beds.  This was so much fun and I had made no really plans about colour scheme but I chose my first ten plants.  The colour scheme chose itself!

I thought everything looked glorious and even after travelling three hours home I had it all planted by evening!  Ok I am keen!  Then it rained so this was a wonderful start.

Sunday we knew was going to be a busy day. My nephew James said he would bring the tractor over to remove more dead trees and pull out the stumps in the ground.   He said he would arrive about 8 am.   I could hear the tractor coming along the road in the distance, chug chug chug.  Then I heard it alter course to come down our drive way.  I ran out to the gate to greet him!   I took photos as he drove up the driveway!  I was so excited!  I knew from experience with James that this day would mean an enormous amount would be achieved.
I was not wrong!

He proceeded to get rid of the famous bee tree and others that were way too close to the house for safety or comfort.  Then he made a pile in a neighbouring paddock which will end up a bon fire next Autumn.

He pulled out enormous tree stumps then filled them with nice dirt for my garden.

This is how the whole day went except I called "lunch!!" and put out ham and salad rolls and drinks and we all sat on the deck and had a break.

It was a fantastic day.  This work made us much safer in fire season. Provided wood to chop up for winter and our whole yard look much better.

We continued to have bon fires.  One of them was the biggest ever!  Again we have reduced rubbish and made our place much safer in summer.   Due to this we still have not once sat in a lounge chair, watched tv or spend evenings inside.

It has been raining but the next week is now meant to be clear.  So while we still can we have a fir like this every night.  Soon fire season will be declared and burning will be out.  Our opportunity to clean up will be over until autumn.  So we keep going.

Inside I worked on my linen cupboard.  It is a beautiful big space.  I made it smell lovely.  Baskets make it look really tidy!

I made progress on my emergency and medical cabinets as well.

I just started to get ahead with meals and started a list on the fridge.  I want to be at least thirty meals ahead so if we cannot go to town or shop then we have a month of meals easily to fall back on.  The pantry is well stocked.  This is building up the freezer.

In the lounge room on both sides of the fireplace there are cupboards and shelves.  They had yuk counter tops on them which were not too glorious.

I took action!  Chloe saw them and was full of praise saying they now look amazing.  She was confused how I did it.   Contact.  Good old stick on Contact.  I have to say it looks convincingly like marble.

To achieve this I watched online tutorials.  Past experience of covering school books with this stuff involved almost ripping out my own eyelashes and eye brows and did not go smoothly. lol  So now I know how to do it and it is easy!

I used a nest (with fake eggs) some deer antlers and gum nuts to decorate them.  A friend saved me this fallen nest.  It came down with a tree yet is prefect.  I just love it.

Out at the front of the property is a mail box.  It is a typical rusty tin.  Inside it has a canvas mail bag and this is where mail comes.  I added my little touch with a wren on each side.

He kind of fits in with the rustic theme.

Out the front the side of the road is lined with bright yellow.  It is a kind of low wattle I think.  It is everywhere!  Plus Wattle lines the driveway so everything is yellow! It is lovely.

On Tuesday Chloe came and picked me up.  We went over to the farm to have lunch with Mum.  It is so nice to be neighbours!  While I was there I dug up little bits of ground covers from the garden.  Mostly they are either white or purple flowering which will suit my garden.  I need lots of ground covers.  Because the ground was so wet it was really easy.
This is the little collection I came home with...

By evening I had them all planted then it rained all night!  The next morning they all looked perky so they are off to a good start and filled in a lot of gaps.  You can now see the beginnings of garden beds!   Since our house is white the colour in the garden will really stand out!

I planted pumpkins and zucchini.   The area I picked out for fruit tress and veggies has a rabbit proof fence.  It is so perfect!  Each night I dug a row over towards a veggie patch.  The pumpkin and zucchini are looking good.  The rain has helped a lot.   I have planted more as seeds.  Next week I hope to add actual rows of corn, sliver beet, tomatoes and beans.   I need to keep digging....

We saw Black Cockatoos right next to the house and there are white ones continuously out the front.  I think the only thing is they might like my veggie garden so I could need a scare crow or something...

I have one established fruit tree.  It is a fig and look!  It is covered in babies!!!
There are several mystery trees that I am sure are old fruit trees.  We are watching them.  They may not fruit but we will see and I am hopeful!

We noticed a little nest down quite low in a tree.  I grabbed the ladder and up I went!

The bird had used blue twine to edge her nest.  It had four babies.  I took so many photos!

You know how I love bartering.  Already farm life has led to lots of bartering!  We have allowed some guys to cut wood to sell.   In exchange they have helped us with areas we need cleaned up.

In fact the wood they are cutting helps us clean up the area and they cleared for us a messy spot.  This  was the next bonfire.

They are also cutting us some wood for our own woodpile.  So it is just a win win.   This has helped heaps get even more work done.

My little city car cannot even make it over to Mum and Dads.  I would literally have to be reduced if I even attempted it.  So I am selling that and buying Chloe's car.  Now she is getting married Luke has a giant four wheel drive.  So hers is no longer really needed.  So this is my new car...

I have only driven it twice so far but I really like it.  Now I can head off to Mum and Dads anytime. 
The first thing I did was put scissors and gloves in there plus a basket for collecting flowers.  Next I will add the first aid kit, wool blankets, water and other emergency stuff.  In fact I better make a note to do that next week.

Now we are back in the city!   Today is a big day... we are picking up Chloe's wedding dress!  Already the car if full of new plants to take back tomorrow!
So that was my week!  I was pretty exciting and exhausting but in a good way!

How did you feather your nest this week, get ahead, save, build up your pantry?
I hope you had a good week.   Every bit helps.  Goals are achieved one step at a time and each step makes a difference!  Be encouraged that your work is important.

And now before I head off...

Bluebird Kelsey has contributed to many show and tells here and everyone has always said she should start a shop!  This has been a dream of hers.
She wrote me this week....
"My ETSY shop is finally opened! I have wanted this for years but never would have started crafting again if not for your encouragement and the other Bluebirds. Thank you very much for helping me with my dreams."
This is so wonderful.

This is the link to the shop to see what Kelsey has made...

Kelsey has offered a coupon for us for the next week until September 28. It is BLUEBIRDS10 for a 10% discount.
There are many ways to support a new business.  Take a look and make it a favourite.   Share it to your fb page or with a friend,  if you purchase anything leave a review.

If you have a dream work towards it!  Make it happen as Kelsey has!

Thursday, 13 September 2018

First week at Bluebirds Farmhouse.

We have moved!  So here we are at Bluebirds Farmhouse!  It is early days.

Last Friday was moving day.  I thought the day would never come.  There was so much to do in order to get our city house ready to sell.  There were plenty of times I thought it would take forever and so much to do I just never knew what to do next!  These times I just remembered to "do the next thing." When you don't know what to do honestly anything will help so just do SOMETHING. Sooner or later all the little bits add up.

Friday morning we got up early and I finished wiping things down and basically mopped the floor as we went out.  The van was full!  And we headed off with four chickens and a parrot!  That was some load I have to say. I doubt we could have fitted in a match at that point.

So off we went!  It was a BEAUTIFUL day.   The trip is three hours.  The closer we got to the farm the greener and more beautiful it was!  Ricky (the parrot) seemed to actually enjoy the ride.

As soon as we arrived we both felt we were home.  We were so excited!  And each day ever since has been an adventure!
It is so peaceful.   The birds and sounds are beautiful.

We got the van unpacked right away, bed set up and made. We had a picnic like dinner as we did last time.  I had shopped for a week and carefully put all the food away hoping I had not forgotten anything!  I have to get used to no close by shops.  You have to think of everything.

Saturday morning we hit the ground running.  We unpacked so much that day!  We have with us probably 80% of our stuff.  In the Adelaide house we have left some of the best things to make the house look lovely to sell.  So we have no table, chairs or lounge!  Or TV.   Well, we have a TV but it doesn't work.  And we have not once thought to sit down and watch it anyhow.   Each evening we have had a bonfire and a pretty early night.

The first day Luke came over to see us with his trailer.  He helped Andy load up three huge loads of rubbish around the place.  This was some stuff from renovations and general junk others had left behind. 

This was a big help and then Luke took Andy to find the dump... farms have their own dump and that is where you take your rubbish.  This isn't much as all scraps and organic things are fed to animals or compost, all burnable stuff is burned...

On Sunday Chloe came over and so did Mum.  Mum had not seen inside the house before.  So she got the royal tour.  She arrived with a bunch of fresh bay leaves for the pantry.

In earlier posts I explained we have a lot to clean up and fuel reduction to do before the summer fire season.  And only about a month before fire bans start.   Fires are our greatest worry really.  So behind the house there are too many dead trees and mess that needs cleaning up.  We started straight away.   Every night we have had a bonfire.  It has been hard work but I have loved it!   And we can see the difference!
My nephew James turned up.  He could see what needed doing.  Since he has come most nights after work and helped us.  

Andy and James have the chainsaws going.  So much for the serenity lol.  As you can see we are removing the absolute dead stuff.
We cut up the good firewood and stack it.  Then the scraps and unsuitable stuff becomes that nights bonfire.

With James helping some of them have been enormous!  We have one pile we are saving up for the biggest of them all maybe next week.   The next morning when I wash my hair I notice how smokey it smells! 

While outside at night I notice how incredible the stars and moon look.  The full sky with no lights from anywhere is amazing.  Most nights have been clear so we have really noticed this.

Another adventure.... there was a giant beehive in a tree literally three meters from the back door.  By large I mean huge huge, huge!   We would not use the back door that is for sure.   A beekeeper came and relocated them for us.

This was the view from the back window!  I have to say it was compelling viewing too.  The beekeeper had heavy metal music playing.  Not calming I wouldn't have thought...
The bees were NOT GRATEFUL for being re located.  The next two days the remainder attacked us all.  Andy got three bites, I got one and the builders who came back to finish some work outside all went home!  
Finally the bee problem is over!

I had a goal to unpack everything before we head back to Adelaide.  We need to water the Adelaide garden and tidy up for house inspections... plus of course see the girls.  So I gave myself five days to unpack.  And I did it!  Most things are some kind of work in progress but the kitchen, wardrobes, pantry and so on are unpacked.

I figure if I wait to show things when they are perfect it will never happen so this is my pantry to date.   I am really happy with it though.

By sheer luck (rather than good planning)  many of my baskets fit perfectly into the shelves.  The baskets are all labelled... tinned fruit, tinned soup, corn, packets, rice, pasta and so on. 

At this point I felt that finally I could see all the work I did before like washing and labelling all my jars,  stocking up loads etc all was paying off.  On day 5 I had a pretty well stocked pantry.

I also started working on my medical cupboard.  This has a way to go and needs labels but I have medical books at the top, bandages, ointments and disinfectant etc all in drawers.  Essential oils on top.   I need a shelf yet for medicines.  Over the counter things are in containers and stacked.

I will keep working on this but it is pretty well stocked.  I had a helper when Belle posted me so many supplies.

Next I started on an emergency preparedness cabinet.  That has a long way to go but it has candles, matches, torches, lanterns, gas cook tops, a fry pan that will run on the generator and so on.

I have started working on a new routine.  One thing is in the morning I walk up to the chicken house. This is quite a distance from the house.  I carry a basket with the chicken feed and household scraps.  On the way back I fill that basket with pinecones.  I don't know the type of pine tree but they are the largest pinecones I have ever seen.  They are literally the size of your head.  I am filling baskets with them for next years fire starters.   Some sit near the new fire as they look lovely.

I figure this part of my routine will keep us in kindling always!

Each day we make discoveries.  There is a small yard fully fenced.  It has a little shed like it could be a yard for a goat or sheep.  It has a tap in the middle and old trees that look like ancient fruit trees... we will see what they are soon.   This is the perfect place to plant my orchard! 

We started cleaning that up.  The tap in the middle is ground water and it drips.  There is a large dip there so I am going to plant pumpkins in that.  I have wanted a pumpkin patch for years.  So this weekend I am planting!   I think I will have to make a surround as there are rabbits....

I would like a goat but Andy isn't sold on this idea... yet.  Chloe would like an Alpaca but Luke ins't sold on that idea yet either!  🐐

Next week I might get some laying hens.  Chloe sent me a link to a local guy who is selling some point of lay red hens.  So maybe!  I need to find some nesting boxes... but one of the old sheds will have something I can use.

The main thing is every morning we wake up so excited for the day!  And every evening we fall into bed so pleased with what we achieved and happy and tired. 
There is a deck to the front.  Andy calls it the landing as that sounds posh lol  
This is where we discuss the day and plan the next.   
Even as I do dishes at the kitchen sink I can see fifty or sixty white cockatoos out the front eating something in the grass.   I have had Galah's sitting on the railing of the deck too.

So after almost a week this is where we are.  Without much furniture it is a bit like camping but we have our good new bed!  It is so comfy to get into after a long day. 

We saved money in a lot of ways.  I had saved $2 coins in a jar for a couple of years as I heard a coke bottle full of these adds up to $1000.  Not having a coke bottle I used a jar.  I thought now is the time to cash it in.  It was so heavy!  I went into the bank and it was $1500!  This has been really handy just now.
We moved ourselves and hired a truck which Andy drove.... plus about six trips in the van.
We kept the old stove and original kitchen. I have new counter tops and splash backs coming but otherwise we kept it all original.  Most we cleaned and stripped back the house (i.e. removing old carpets) rather than add things.  
We have increased our preparedness a lot!  Now we have ground water and rain water.  Wood fires that I can cook on and heat water.   Lots of fuel for them from all the dead trees we are cutting up.  We have plugs in the house so that if the power goes out we just turn our generator on and change plugs.  As we get more set up and get the veggies in, the laying hens, the pumpkin patch this all gets better and better! 
So it was really my biggest week of feathering our nest ever.  Starting a new nest!  

I intended to post as a new blog but just cannot get it to work so here we are in the same place!   And to everyone I normally email please accept this as my correspondence as I am unable to keep up with much else just now.  Also thank you to everyone who commented on Laine's Letter.  I have not been able to reply as I normally would, but thank you!

Now we have come back to Adelaide to get the house ready for inspections this weekend, water the garden, see the girls and do a grocery shop.  It is time to take a breath and consider our second week at the farmhouse.  I know we did a lot in one week!  It was a wonderful start!  As each thing comes together it is so nice! 

I hope you have had a good week. How did you get ahead, build up your home or save?

I will go back to posting Feather your Nest Fridays and some other posts I have in mind.

Many Bluebirds and millions of others are threatened right now by a hurricane.  I have heard especially from Pasty how they have been preparing.  They could really use prayers now. 

Sunday, 9 September 2018

We have moved!

I was not able to post Feather your Nest Friday as that was actually our moving day!  It was huge!   Each day I have appreciated your prayers.  And each day I have written down big things that happened and taken photos.

Now at the farm we have internet MOSTLY.  We are still working out what works and what doesn't and we don't have any tv.  So I THINK I can blog at least on clear days!

Some things I will have to do any way I can make them work like this post.  Being unable to post myself you can imagine how I felt when I got this email yesterday from Laine.

I can't get my iPad to talk to my laptop and I can only get emails on my iPad!  So here is her letter to you via screen shots... I hope this works!

It is so good for me to read some of Laine's encouragement.  I hope you enjoy it too.

 So sorry this is such a bad way to post Laine's Letter, I hope you can read it.  But I know it is precious to everyone who has followed Laine for so long!

Now to test if this will actually post!  If it does then I am set to post about our new life at Bluebirds Farmhouse!

I truly hope everyone has had a great and productive week and will have a wonderful new week. xxx

Thursday, 30 August 2018

Feather your Nest Friday, 31st August, 2018.

Today is the last day of winter!  We have a spring move and a spring wedding!
This week was pretty much last week repeated!  Here at home I have been using up things from the freezer and packing up.

We did a lot of moving.   Andy hired a truck and we stacked that with the bulk of our things and headed off to the farm house.  The best days are the ones at the farm!

Chloe and Luke helped us unload.  Builders at the house also saw we had heavy things and they helped too!  It was wonderful!

We had our bed, BBQ, generators and all sorts.  The best thing was we slept our first night!   
First we went through the house to see how things are looking!   And they were looking good!
Andy has a large office with a wall of windows.   He loves it.  

Our bedroom has a wall of built in cupboards then an area like a large dressing table.  My biggest mirror which was my Nan's fitted perfectly.   So that was it's obvious home.  

So this is the bare bones of the bedroom.  No cupboard door handles yet!

I chose a craft room.  It has a similar unit with space for a chair to be my desk or my sewing table.

I want to make myself a huge inspiration board on that wall!

It was very exciting as we have two new air conditioners.   Hot summers are already on my mind with spring coming.   And a new combustion fire was installed in the lounge room.   This will heat the house,  burn our wood and I will have my dutch oven and kettle sitting on here through out winters!

My new fridge went in too.   I picked it for rows of shelves to set up my containers to keep fruit and veggies fresh in.   I wanted to take a photo but could only find a few of my containers! 

But next week we will be doing our first shop and stock up as we will be moving!  So I will show you how it looks then!
The bottom of the fridge is a freezer with drawers.

So this was all exciting!  

I had packed a picnic type dinner.   After a long day we sat on the deck and looked at the view and had our first meal.   When we travel I generally have a kind of picnic tea.  

This provided lunch the next day and snacks since.  So easy but really nice.  
We enjoyed the quiet, the birds.  

We did a lot of unpacking,  set up the bed,  worked through a lot of lists.   Next trip I need to clean that oven, do windows, set up the laundry...  well the list has a couple of hundred things on it!

To my amazement we got the internet working!   Next we need to figure out TV.  But Chloe helped and with a booster we could get the internet.  This is no small thing... it took Chloe months to get the internet! 

We had some savings.  I would say hiring a truck, packing ourselves, moving ourselves etc is a saving.   We have made the most of many things at the house rather than replace them i.e. the kitchen cupboards and natural floors etc.   One current one is the cupboard and drawer knobs....  I counted we need 94!    94 x anything is a lot and I found most knobs have been around $5.   Even on Ebay I was surprised by their cost.   I settled to buy new ones for the kitchen and recycle the rest.  Some just needed a clean like these old ones with little flowers...

I have brought a heap home to paint.  I just need to take them from creamy to white.

It was so nice sleeping at the farm!  It was so quiet.  So peaceful.  It felt like home. 

For the next few days we are back in the city,  focusing on getting this house ready to sell and aim to hand over the keys by the end of next week.  So now it is the last packing, last cleaning...  it is a lot!  
At the farm I felt so excited!   But last night I felt so daunted!  There is so much to do here!  I think I was definitely over tired and headachy when I went to bed.

I am glad to write my Friday post.   It helps me see how much we have achieved and how far we have come... also how close we are to moving!!   It also helps me let everyone know what we have been doing so that you do not think I am a bad friend who never writes!

I got a letter from Laine.  She said the most beautiful thing.   She said "I read about your Dad in Proverbs today.  A wise man leaves an inheritance  for his children's children.  I thought of your Dad and your move to the farm, so happy for your family."    I thought this was just the nicest thing to say.  

It is so true that we are working to provide for our families and to help those still to come.   The work we do now affects the generations.  There is a bigger picture!  

I need to grocery shop,  get to Kmart and IKEA for some shelving and odds and ends that we need.  I want to go see the girls!   Then I just need to get bits and pieces that are left packed up, tidied and clean.   I hope over the weekend I get all that done!

How was your week?  How did you get ahead,  build up your home, pantry, emergency supplies?
Do you notice how the things you do consistency really add up?  A week can be a long time and make a world of difference too!

Have a lovely weekend! xxx

Friday, 24 August 2018

A letter from Laine. Dated August 24 2018.

Dear Sisters,
The early morning last Thursday started with this text to my family and friends:

"Please pray for me, my bladder is pretty bad today, already contacted my dr.  Please pray I don't go into a flare and can calm this down."

I have Interstitial Cystitis, a chronic, painful bladder condition.  Nothing is worse than a flare, which is likened to stage four cancer pain. My flares usually last two to three weeks.  I was at the beginning of that pay early Thursday morning. My Mom came over to talk to me and I was already having trouble talking. I hadn't had a flare in a year and a half, and as always, I was shocked at it's speed and severity.

I rarely eat out. My diet is limited.  I follow the Specific Carbohydrate diet but even that diet is more strict for me as I can't have dairy, honey, most fruit, certain spices, certain nuts, and the nightshades that are allowed on the diet.  I bring my food wherever I go.  I don't mind. I really love the food the LORD has given me to eat for the past four and a half years.  It's my "manna", and I am very thankful for it. It keeps me healthy and able to take care of my husband, my nine year old daughter, and help with my eight grandchildren.  (Two more grandchildren are coming, one and day now!)

So how did I get into this oncoming flare?  I got cross contaminated. Even to the best of my ability this can sometimes happen...even in my own kitchen. I know I have a small window of opportunity to ward off a flare, so I immediately emailed my doctor, asked family and friends for prayer, started eating all my safe foods and drank copious amounts of fresh ginger tea. Then I set to work on my house. It was 6 am and as I worked I kept thanking God for everything I could think of while praying over my body.  Thanking God that school hadn't started yet, so I wasn't homeschooling my daughter that day. Thanking Him I was not on a trip that we planned, which got cancelled. Thanking Him over and over for so many little things and so many big things He has done or is doing.

My Mom used to say "Laine, you can only have room for one thought at a time, make it a thankful thought."

I was thankful my routines were in place. I knew what to do next in my home without even thinking about it.  After I made my husband breakfast and saw him off to work, I tidied and dusted the living room, fed the cat and the dogs, headed to the bathroom next and cleaned the counter, mirror, and swished the sink and toilet.  I made my bed, put away any clothes, and dusted my room. I had vacuumed the house the day before, so I was happy to forgo that.  I checked two other rooms and made sure they were in order, then I headed to the kitchen.   I put away any clean dishes, washed our cups from the night before, tidied up anything on our table and desk, then quickly set about to making scrambled eggs, a vegetable soup that always calms my condition (I think I've shared that recipe before) and lentil bread with avocado on top.  I needed to eat everything  quickly to stave off this oncoming flare.  By that time my mom had come over and wanted to help, so she put on a load of laundry for me. I put a roast in the crockpot for dinner in the evening.  My little daughter, Lucy, watered all my potted plants and my garden for me and then tidied her room.  And my oldest daughter, Abbie, went food shopping for me as we had planned to do that together that day.

Between thanking God over and over and praying over my body as I worked, I also have a manta the the pain intensifies. "Don't think about it, don't think about it, don't think about it!"

"My help comes from the LORD, which made Heaven and earth." Psalm 121:2

The rest of the day I ate a lot of my vegetable soup and ginger tea. My doctor emailed me back that morning, so I immediately started on the protocol she gave. It really helped a lot.

I am so thankful to say, I never went into a full flare. Thanks be to God!

"I was brought low, and he helped me." Psalm 116.6b

Our granddaughter is due and day now. I am so thankful to be able as I will be watching their three children while my son and his wife are in the hospital. I watched all their three kids for two and a half weeks while my son was away and my daughter-in-law was bedridden early on in her pregnancy. I didn't know if my routines would work with four children 8 years and under in the house, while homeschooling two of them, and of course, all the added mayhem of family life.  But they stood the test!
And, again, I was so thankful I had my routines in place to keep my home running smoothly.  It has taken me years honing them to the point that doing the routines in my home are like going for a walk. I don't think about it, I just walk.

"Don't think about it, don't think about it, don't thinks about it!"  Whether in pain, or with a bunch of kids in tow, I just keep waling by His great, great grace.

Love Laine.

Feather your Nest Friday, 24th August, 2018.

It is still Friday but very late in the day!  We came home from the farm this afternoon.
This week so much more was achieved!  I am tired but it is a good tired from getting lots done.

I have a few more photos as now the house looks less of a disaster zone and there are less sheets over everything.

We had a week of more packing, work on our home getting it ready to sell and lots of lists of things we need to do before we can move.
At the farmhouse  builders have been pulling up old carpets and sanding the wooden floors that are underneath.   And I am so happy to see lovely light coloured wooden floorboards... I want no stain just clear finish on them so the rooms will be as light as possible.

The kitchen cabinets have been undercoated and are being sprayed with some hard wearing paint and while we were there the old lino came up and the floor was sanded.  Straight away the room looked so much bigger!

The stove and sink are wrapped in plastic before the spray painting.   I love the floors!

Other rooms are up to about the same stage...

Inside painting is done and everything looks clean and fresh.  From where we started this is all a huge transformation.

Except the windows!  They haven't been cleaned in a long time.  We will get to those next week...

Because of sanding and mess we stayed at a little cabin near by.  It was just lovely.  We had a meal with Chloe and Luke and during the days I took a picnic to the house and a thermos each of tea and coffee.  We used the back of the van as a picnic table.  It was so sunny and beautiful so it was just gorgeous.  I thought over and over how making up a picnic and taking tea and coffee was the best investment of time ever.  It made the day so nice and when I thought I was so tired we had a break and then were ready to get going again.  You get so much more work done this way.

This was our front garden in the cottage we stayed in!  Full of birds too!  

During the day we worked on cleaning up another patch out the back.  You would call it fuel reduction for fire season.  We had a big fire going for seven hours and just kept piling stuff on.  

After we could see that between this and the last time we had made a difference.  We need to do this again each time we are there as fire season begins mid October then we can no longer burn anything.  Currently the ground is very damp, water is laying everywhere and it is safe to have a bonfire.

We saw there are a lot of rabbits around.  And I noticed a lot of the kinds of birds about including black cockatoos. 

At the end of the day Andy raked up around the fire so it would burn down and not escape.  Luke and Chloe arrived to see how we were going.  Luke came towards Andy and said "Andy don't move!"   Andy froze.  I looked... and there was a Huntsman spider the size of a small side plate on Andy's jumper.  Luke whacked it off!   Andy used to handle snakes as part of his job, isn't worried by lizards, mice, rats... but he hates spiders!  This was the largest spider I have ever seen!
That was time to call it a day! 

We have come home with a list of things we need, measurements and plans.  On the surface of it this list is daunting.  But if we tackle one thing at a time we will get through it!

At home I worked on my "use it up challenge" and used quite a bit more from the freezer.  This is helpful too as we have a lot of extra expenses for a while.  Next week, for instance, we need to hire a truck. 

I finished a rug which is for charity.  This took ages but it is very soft.  Mimi gave me this lovely sparkly yarn...

Thanks so much Mimi! This kept me busy for about eight weeks!

Now I have started working edges on some kitchen towels I got from Kmart.  They are gorgeous and at $3 each I thought I could do these as gifts.

I got a whole heap to do.  I will show them spread out when I have finished some.
Some are for the farmhouse too.  They are shades of grey with highland cows on them! 

We arrived home and I got started with the washing.  Tomorrow I need to go buy a fridge that will fit in the farmhouse kitchen.  Our current fridge will go too after this house is sold.  But as we will no longer weekly shop and need to go much longer we know we need a much larger fridge.  So I am hoping I can get a good deal and a fridge I really like.   Over the last months I have been investing in containers to keep fruit and veggies fresh.  Chloe has tested some different ones.  She loves the Debbie Meyer Green boxes the best of all.  She has also Tupperware Vent Smarts.  We looked into this a lot as with the price of food plus distance keeping things fresh as long as possible seems like a good investment.   I basically can't wait to have a fridge set up with these! 

So that is my week!  
How did you build up your nest, get ahead,  add to your pantry or preparedness?  
I hope it was a fruitful week for you.  I am thinking a lot about how the work we do adds up.  Things can seem enormous or impossible but little by little we get there.  Be encouraged and if you don't know what to do next "do the next thing."

Over the weekend we are going to hear from Laine.  I am blessed that she has shared something I can post for everyone to read.  I know many of you love it when we hear from Laine! xxx