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.

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Sharpen your skills.

Learning new skills and being capable are valuable things. At all times this is true but I've been reading peoples responses to the budget and cut backs and it has me realising that in harder times basic skills are so important. Being able to make a meal cheaply, budget, mend, fix,hem your jeans, hand wash, garden etc all help us weather the storms. Being capable doesn't happen over night and we all learn continuously and over time, it never ends.

There is a verse or saying about having a teachable heart. There is a desire to learn new things, improve things and get better. My friend Helen has a teachable heart. She is always watching you tube videos and reading recipes and so on learning new ways to do things. And she will tell me her discoveries and I will tell her mine. Many times they will be ways to save money, especially in the kitchen, but they could be anything! It is a joy to have that moment of understanding something new and benefitting from it. A teachable heart is such a wonderful thing that it is probably worth an entire blog post another day!

Previously I've spoken of the women in my life who have taught me new skills, from my old neighbour Dorie to my Nans' and friends. I have been very lucky that way. But I believe we are surrounded by ways to learn new things and it is easier than ever. (due to the internet, you tube, libraries, courses....)

Many times when stuck with something, learning a new skill will give you a solution. Maybe learning ten new skills will give you ten solutions!

If the budget is just not working and food is costing too much due to bought lunches and take aways learning to use a crock pot might be a solution. If bunches of herbs are setting you back learning to grow and harvest them is a great solution. Some of my big savers were learning to cut my own hair, make my own gifts, mend and fix things and so on. The thing is to consider that there may be a better way, a cheaper way, a more efficient way and that what we are doing now possibly could be improved somehow. The exciting bit is to see a big saving or a big breakthrough come from a new skill.

Laine said she used to watch day time TV and read trashy books. I found it hard to imagine as in the end she was so industrious but thats how she started out. She was also the worst cook. When she married Art the first meal she cooked him he threw up afterwards! It was terrible! So she decided to learn and did so much to become a good cook. She would go to the library as if she was a Uni student and get books and study them and practice. She would ask other women to show her how they made this or that. This reminds me of when I would ring up Mum or Nan and ask for instructions on how to cook something!) If she had a guest she would get them to teach her what they were good at. That woman took gathering new skills very seriously. Then she started on herbs and gardening. She encouraged her children to continually work on their skills and especially according to their talents.

This is so smart! The Bible says that someone skilled in their work will stand before Kings and great men. Well, this you see all the time. 

The other day I had a Joel Osteen message on face book. It said to be careful with how you spend your day and be careful who you spend it with. That just hit me. The more I think on this the bigger this statement gets!

Helen and I are always taking about economical food shopping and economical cooking. I am going to do a few posts on some really economical meals as these can really stretch the weeks budget. Especially the ones that also give you lunches for work or school as well. They are a big saving. We both watched Save with Jamie as if we were going to be tested on it. I like to keep a note pad and take notes of great ideas. His clever ways to make multi meals and throw whole pumpkins in the bottom of the oven while you are cooking something else so you have soft useable cooked pumpkin was just so brilliant!

Yesterday I went to see Mum and show her my finished last rug and the blanket I am working on. She loved my finished one and adored the one I'm working on and loved the colours! Chloe was there and also went nuts over this ones colours. The one I am on now is the full width of a queen bed and will be the full length. I am about one third the way and it is very heavy already. But I also love how it is looking and feeling.

Mum immediately swooped with a needle to sew in some of my loose ends (there are many!) laying aside what she was working on. She can't resist. This suits me, sewing the ends in is a huge job! Mum is also a great sewer upper of things and has been stuck with many finishing off projects over the years for us all!

So, there we are chatting and working and it occurred to me that I should take a photo. As this is learning and sharing new skills. What a lovely thing!

There are many times we are all working on our projects talking together. I mentioned yesterday that I remember being about four and I would knit a row but I could not turn corners, lol. Mum would have to "turn the corners" and Chloe was the same, I would have to re start her each row. Also I remember the first rug Mum made me, it was pink and white large squares and it covered my bed. It was knitted. I loved it.

Mum now would probably cover a football field per year with what she knits! And she still works full time she is not retired, she mostly knits at night.

Mum had tried a new stitch from a book and was showing us that. And I had shown her the bobble stitch I had learned (called Pineapple stitch) 

It really is true that busy hands make happy hearts. You can kind of see it even in the pictures. Except Mum is going oh no is my hair alright? and so on...

There is a sparkle through my rug it is hard to show and it is just a little bit but it is lovely.

Now is a great time of year to teach kids knitting or crochet or maybe Tom Boy stitch. I notice in Spotlight they have Tom Boy stitch kits. They are fantastic. It takes a little time to sit down and teach these things but it is worth it. 

This all amounted to a lovely afternoon. And we went our separate ways to work on our projects in the evening. After solving a few world problems and soup recipes etc!

It is a lovely day today as well, sunny and mild. We have had a big clean up of autumn leaves and general tidy up. I hope you are having a beautiful weekend. xxx


  1. Thank goodness for the internet and Youtube. We are so lucky to have access to these things.
    And all those wonderful documentaries on TV. I am very grateful that I have been able to learn so much about the world and its people through TV.

    1. I agree Louise! I am amazed at the good stuff to choose from. I think I have too many projects and things I want to do and not enough time but it is wonderful really! I hope you are having a lovely weekend. Thanks for your comment. Love

  2. I'm so grateful you thought to photographically record a memory. This is such a lovely post. Three generations of busy bees. Your precious mother is the star of the show in my book. What a doll to add your golden touch to your lovely piece. That thing is HUGE!!!

    By the way, I am in the process of I unsubscribing from all blogs I receive via e-mail. Never fear. I'll be subscribing via Blogger. I gotta keep up with the Nesting Bluebirds. :-D

    Hugs and happy highways,

    1. Thank you Kelley. I am glad you will keep in touch and reading. I am so pleased to have "met" you and am trying to add to my pillowcases before I send them off to you! Mum has taught me heaps, I will tell her what you said. I can barely lift and turn my blanket it is getting so heavy! xxx


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