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 26 November 2015

Feather your Nest Friday, 27th November, 2015.

For me this is really Feather your Nest Friday for a whole fortnight since I didn't post last week. It has been a really long week!
Luckily I write down things I am happy I achieved. Since we have been in crisis mode a lot of what I actually did was just keep things running and the wheels from falling off. I kept all the basics going along ok. I know I am overall much better if I can keep things as normal as possible and be busy. So I keep going and think keeping everything as ok as possible helps everyone. (as far as actually possible!)

And times when I  do get ahead all come in handy now. There were meals in the freezer, easy things to put together, I was not worried and didn't need to go to the shops etc. All a big help.

One of the ways I got ahead was I kept wrapping Christmas presents and I have posted four. I am glad of that.

I get very excited to post and deliver presents I have been putting together all year! And also if I know my friends have their trees up I really like them to have presents under it. Seriously I am like a five year old. I haven't got all them posted but I've made progress at least. And this is a happy thing.

Andy had finished the range hood and it was my part to paint it. But even that Andy helped with. Overall and taking into consideration the cost of materials this saved us about $800. I am very pleased with it!

I also saved money by freezing some bananas Mum gave me,
Earning a $5 Woolworths voucher.
Earning 500 points towards another voucher.

I found 21 lebanese cucumbers for $3! I am making pickles...

Also I got five bunches of radishes (which Andy loves) for $3.

I went through the catalogues and shopped the specials.

I made progress on my freezer challenge. I could now fit in a turkey which is a start!

Some things that were nice for the nest included...

Lucy gave me flowers. They are artificial and will last forever...

The garden is full of flowers and at the moment the Hydrangeas are out. We have white ones out the front...

And purple ones out the back...

I hope to have more good things to report next Friday!

Just now I am having computer problems and my ipad is out of order.  So HOPEFULLY I can post the  introduction to the challenge I mentioned next week.

We have less than a month until Christmas!  I want to appreciate this special time.

How did you build up your nest or save money this week? I hope it was a good


  1. Dear Annabel,

    Thinking of you and continuing in prayer for your Dad.

    This week, I used up quite a bit out of the freezer in meals in order to make room for sale items. Also, used up the bits and bobs in the refrigerator in the meals so they wouldn't go bad.

    Saved a lot of money by finding a great sale at Hancock's when I happened in to purchase some on sale flannel for a neck roll I am making for a friend. Found nice suiting fabric on a one day sale for $2.99 per yard; regular price ranged from $9.99 per yard to $14.99 per yd. I purchased enough to make two skirts, a vest, and a nice hat and scarf set for $27. The regular price for the yardage would have been $120. I was very happy with the savings!

    I made a gift for a friend instead of purchasing one. I used flannel and muslin I had in my stash.

    We added to our food pantry with some very good seasonal sales. I, also, baked four dozen cookies, four dozen muffins, and three loaves of banana bread and pumpkin/pecan bread to put in the freezer for future use. I baked for our children and grandchildren and gave them their treats for Thanksgiving.

    I hope your computer problems aren't serious and everything works out easily.

    With love and hugs,

    1. Dear Glenda, What a good week! All that lovely cooking sounds so good. Also great fabric buys. As you know I love heat packs so I think that will be a very nice gift.
      I hope you have a lovely weekend! With love and thanks,

  2. Annabel, computer problems are just the pits! I hope it is nothing serious and that you can get resolution to whatever is wrong soon.

    I am in Christmas sewing mode and completed 'Christmas pillowcases' for my grandchildren this week and purchased fabric to make an apron for my husband for Christmas. He loves to cook (yes, I know how blessed I am) and he needs a manly apron to wear when he's cooking.

    I am continuing to pray for your dad and for your whole family.

    1. Dear Patsy,
      Yes computer issues make you want to tear your hair out! Mine are mostly fixed and even though I thought they were pushing me over the edge of a bad week! I sort of think I badly needed an update and to sort a few issues out and it kind of forced me... so I think things are looking up. I badly need a new lap top and hope to get one next year.
      Your sewing sounds lovely. I hope to see these things on your blog when you are finished. Or maybe you cant show them incase the family see...
      With much love,

  3. hello Annabel, i achieved nothing this week but am impressed with your lot, especially with your dad being so unwell. lovely post to read. fi Xx

    1. Dear Fiona, Thank you. I think your idea of nothing is still many peoples idea of something! I am trying to have a catch up this weekend, with rest, emails , replies and so many things that got away from me this week. I hope you are having a restful weekend! With love,

  4. Dear Annabel,

    You have done great during such an uncertain time. I am still praying for your precious dad and family.

    Your hydrangeas are gorgeous, and I love the specials you got. I'm with Andy, I love good radishes! The artificial flowers you got are a great addition, they are beautiful. Well done on the range!

    I've had a week so busy that I'm lucky the wheels didn't fall off here as well. We hosted a big Thanksgiving dinner today, we had company from 1:00 until 9:00. I'm exhausted but in a happy way! I kept the house going, added a few things to the pantry, and cooked for two days. I intend to have a rest and relax the next few days and enjoy my kids being home.

    I will not do any more Christmas shopping until after the Black Friday sales here. I'm sure you've heard of this craziness in the US the day after Thanksgiving. I personally find it awful. I don't like all the rush-rush and stores so crowded that you're in lines longer than your eyes can see. No thanks. I know many who do but I don't believe there is any deal to be had that is worth the stress involved in getting those deals. I look after prices all the time and I think people would be better off to do this than to participate in this kind of craziness.

    OK...I'm off my soapbox now :)

    I, too, hope your computer issues are resolved. We depend on our technology for so many things, it's a nuisance when it's not cooperative!

    I really need to be re-set. So I'm aiming for rest and fresh perspective.

    I'm glad you can keep things moving as smoothly and as normally as possible. Please take good care and look after yourself!

    Colette xxx

  5. Dear Annabel, I hope things continue to improve for your Dad. That's a productive week for you, all things considered. I hope you are all safe from the fires as well. Lots done here, although not much worth mentioning. Just the usual with menu planning, prep and shopping. I managed to make over 30 embellished manila luggage tags, and scribed lots of butchers paper for gift wrap as that is going to some friends as gifts. I've also done quite a bit of sewing and alterations to clear the deck for finishing gifts for my granddaughters. Now that my daughter has finished school for the year, I'm not locked into a 9:30-2:30 time frame! I hope that things are looking up there for you all. Love, Mimi xxx

    1. Dear Mimi,
      I am fascinated by the time frame... school hours here were 8.50 to 3.30 and I lived by that for 14 years so I know that by heart. I am jealous bout those hours (retrospectively of course..) I love the sound of the luggage tags! I am seriously behind of replies, correspondence and basically everything. But things have improved greatly we just need to catch up. Also I am so tired! I hope you have a lovely weekend, Wit love and thanks,

  6. Hi Annabel, tried to comment on your last post but failed. Hope this one goes through. Your Dad continues to be in my prayers. I'm so glad he appears to be in the men. I so hope the farm is well away from all the fires.
    I used the leftovers of a quilt top I purchased from Vinnies to make a set of coasters for a dear friend. I will make him a bar towel and then his gift is finished. I finished off a messenger/ laptop bag for my gorgeous nephew. I used some fabric I ourchased some time ago for this. I'm gradually reducing my fabric stash to a reasonable size.
    I have completed week two of a four week teaching contract and received a pay slip that makes me feel the hard work is s worth the effort involved. I have been offered a two day per week teaching contract for term one 2016. Feeling so blessed.
    This weekend will see a bit of mulching in our so topical Queensland garden, using sugar cane hay from a local farm. Mch cheaper than the commercial varieties. I am so hoping for a bit of rain for some relief from the heat and humidity. The rain will also put some moisture into our very dry soil.
    Much love to you and yours. Big hugs for Dad.

    1. Dear Jane, I am sorry that comment didnt come through and I dont know why. This week I have had computer issues and I cannot tell WHY computers do half of what they do but they seem to know when things are going wrong or you are in a hurry as that is when they play up!
      Thank you for trying again.
      I really like your idea to make a quilt top into other things. I can think of so many possibilities! Now I will be watching out for something like that to cut up. It is also wonderful to use up fabric you have. That is one subject I will be on next year... ideas for using up fabric and yarn as many of us have massive supplies!
      Congratulations on the teaching contract! Already your 2016 is going well and off to a good start.
      Thank you very much for your wishes about my Dad. With love,

  7. I saved money this week by not going to the shops very often as it was too hot! ;-) I hope your Dad continues to improve, Annabel and that he is out of hospital well and truly before Christmas. We have had problems here with my son's iPad Mini as it just suddenly stopped connecting to the internet and I did a Google search and there seem to have been lots of people who have had the same problem and it is something to do with one of the last updates. I have tried to solve the problem myself to no avail and the next step is to ring the Apple support line otherwise we will have to pay a technician $50 just to have a look at it :-(

    1. Dear Nanna Chel,
      I hope Apple support might help you. I had to go to a technician and it wasnt too bad it was $35 all up and I am back up and running. I think you should get help from support or even from other people and how they resolved the problem. But honestly computer problems are awful.
      I hope the heat has subsided. We have been lucky with mild days. Except for the fires of course. We are not affected... it is the area we used to live but not now. Terrible though. With lots of love,

  8. Annabel Oh my those veggies look good and beautiful job on the range hood. We painted the deck ourselves so I know you saved a lot in labor costs. Money still in our pockets! I got some specials and some freebies this week. After using some store rewards I got my grandson an outfit for Christmas for free. My DIL was here and seen the shutter planters and loved them. She doesn't know their hers for Christmas. Next year I may make some white ones and put some sparkly glitter on them and put little Christmas trees in them. Rick fixed my truck saving labor costs there, but couldn't fix the washing machine so had to get a new one. You are like me I always try to keep things as normal as possible during stressful situations. It helps me from having an anxiety attack if I go about my normal business at hand.

    1. Dear Vicky,
      You did very well! And you know your DIL will love her gift too!
      Like with you painting the deck I love to know how much we saved. Labor for these jobs is usually really expensive. I love saving that money!
      We think the same... keeping things going, meals on the table etc helps everyone in a crisis. it helps.
      I hope you are having a good weekend! With love,

  9. You did well this last week Annabel with all you had going on, I hope your Dad continues to improve and is home to celebrate Christmas with all his loving family.
    This week we put up our Christmas lights and Christmas tree. I also now wrapped a few presents and have them under the tree, Most of my presents are hampers so still have a few things to cook before they can go under the tree, but that is all I need to do and Christmas gifts are done. I bought me grandson a wooden train set and Glenn is putting it together and on a board so it can slide under his bed out of the way when it isn't in use. I'm hoping it will look great when done. Helping put that together will be the next couple of afternoons.
    Other things this week were cooking all meals and snacks, doing all washing and drying it out in the sun, I put a coat of polish on my timber veneer floors and just need to shampoo our mats to have them fresh for Christmas.
    I'm very pleased to have everything done for Christmas and it isn't even December yet.
    I'm hoping you have a great week this week Annabel and you take care. Debbie xx

    1. Dear Debbie, You are doing well and ahead of me with the tree etc. I just love your idea for your Grandson. This will be a big hit. It is great that it can all slide under the bed too. You truly have got well ahead and I am sure it will make December more enjoyable/less stressful. With love

  10. I am pleased that your dad is doing so much better! I keep a prayer list and I love to look back over a month and see how often God answered our prayers. It's really awesome!
    I posted this a Leftover Makeover ideas list this evening for anyone who might have Thanksgiving leftovers here in the U.S. I posted my savings for the week here:

    1. Dear Terri,
      I love the idea of looking back over the prayer list and seeing the results. I will try to do that too.
      We have to wait until Christmas to have it but I LOVE left over turkey and in fact all the Christmas left overs. It is like a three day rest! Turkey is my favorite meat and it makes such good pies, wraps and so on after the initial roast of course. My family kept turkeys for many years.
      Have a good new week! With love, Annabelxxx

  11. I'm so pleased for you and your family that your dad is doing so well Annabel. What an emotionally draining time for you, no wonder you are tired! And what a testament to your planning ahead that you've managed to maintain some normality in such a trying time.

    My week was a bit of a funny one, I felt like I was rushing all week. And in the end most things that needed to be done did get done, but it wasn't particularly enjoyable! I did a lot of prep for my sons 5th birthday today, including making some gifts and lots of baking. He woke up yesterday with chicken pox so we had to put off his party! Most of the food can be frozen so it is not too bad, and he was quite happy when I said I would make him another cake for his party lol.

    This week was a good reminder that I am much more relaxed and happy when I'm well prepared. So this week I'm going to try to have a bit of a 'reset' week, and get on top of things. With all four of my boys down with chicken pox we won't be leaving the house much!

    I hope you are able to have a reasonably normal week and your Dad continues to amaze you all :)

    1. Dear Jen, I am sorry your boys have chicken pox! You must have your hands full! I hope they are improving. I know all the baking wont go to waste but the poor little birthday boy... Five is a beautiful age. I love he is quite happy that you will make him another cake.
      When the girls were at school I had a friend with five boys. Once they were bigger she did amazing things to feed them all and I learned so much from her! And yes being prepared and getting ahead is a huge help!
      Thank you for your good wishes. Have a good new week! With love

  12. Amazing, but I did go grocery shopping even though we had a feast on Thursday. I was blessed to find 10lbs. of organic carrots for $2.79. Yes, for the whole bag! I've used some for juicing. Yum. We are finishing some building projects, so I wanted to have plenty of healthy but quick snacks. My discount grocery came to the rescue.
    So glad to go to my discount grocery and a small fabric store only. Black Friday is sooo crazy here in the states! Isn't it nice to have made your gifts? Or planned ahead? Then I can focus on my family rather than "all the good deals."
    But I saved money by sewing some pillowcases for my nephews. Today, I'll sew for my nieces. I did a little holiday wrapping after the kids were in bed and I plan to do some more tonight. Yippee!
    Thanks for all your inspiration. My family and I will continue to pray for your dad.

  13. Oops! forgot to mention that I got some cranberries for 99 cents a bag. They were $1.89 before Thanksgiving everywhere I looked. I stock up on these and freeze a year's supply.
    Also I wanted to congratulate you on your range hood. It looks striking but simple. I will copy you, if I may, when our kitchen addition is complete.

    1. Dear Leslie, Thank you very much for your prayers.
      Well done on your sewing and being well ahead.
      Re the range hood. I used a stainless steel finish paint. You can get very realistic stainless steel paint. It is amazing. And washable. I really am pleased with the results. No one would ever know its not stainless steel.
      With love and thanks, Annabel.xxxx

  14. Dear Annabel,
    am so glad your dad is doing better. I will keep praying for him and your wonderful family. We had a great home made thanksgiving here. Just about every thing from scratch. I bought one premade pumpkin pie for $1.99. Not sure if I could make one for that price. We have many lovely left overs. We got a 20 pound turkey for 42 cents a pound on sale and you had to spend 25 dollars besides the turkey. :) Have a blessed week.

  15. Glad to hear that your dad is doing better. Thank you so much for all of your inspiration. I only recently discovered you and have enjoyed reading through some old posts. I have started writing down everything I achieve each week too and have decided to do a weekly round up each Sunday on my blog. Hope you have a great week.

    Hugs, Fee

    1. Dear Fee, Thank you very much. It is so helpful to know all we achieved at the end of the week. You can see you are getting somewhere! Thank you so much for commenting! Love

  16. Your hydrangeas look lovely Annabel. They make a great cut flower that lasts a long time.

    Here's what we got up to this week -

    * Bought a punnet of Cos lettuce seedlings from Big W for 50 cents. They were on clearance because they had a few dry leaves on them. I picked a punnet with 10 seedlings

    * Picked a couple of raspberries per day. It doesn't sound like much but in the middle of the season I'll be picking handfuls twice a day

    * Continued to pick a handful of strawberries each day.

    * Picked silverbeet for two meals.

    * Made a double batch of raspberry and white choc muffins and sold most of them

    * Sold excess eggs.

    * .Jessica made a double batch of chocolate choc chip muffins for snacks. Most were frozen straight away.

    * Darren cooked up some beetroot he'd been growing. He's even pickled it to be eaten in sandwiches and with salads. Thankyou to Annabel for the seeds.

    * Watered the veggie seedlings with saved shower warm up water.

    * Hand washed the dinner dishes a couple of nights this week. There wasn't enough to put the dishwasher on.

    * Unplugged the Wii to keep the standby light off. The girls don't use it too often these days.

    * Picked a bunch of hydrangeas from the garden for a friend who was in need of a " pick me up '.

    * Darren used shredded paper in the chicken coop instead of hay.

    * Made chocolate cakes for a church morning tea

    1. Excellent week Wendy! I hope this week is a really good one with no stresses!xxxx

  17. Dear Annabel, The range hood looks amazing! Well done to both you and Andy! And such a great deal on the cucumbers! Pickles galore! lol Glad your dad is improving!

    Hydrangeas are one of my favorite flowers! My grandparents had two bluish/purple ones by their door. They are just gorgeous!

    This week, I made a small blanket for our friends' 4 year old and wrapped a stuffed animal in it. I also made two pillowcases from an old sheet for Christmas gifts. All materials were on hand. I also made a big pot of turkey broth from the Thanksgiving turkey with lots of meals from leftovers. So nice to have several meals planned with minimal cooking.

    You had a great week, Annabel! Love, Teri

  18. Glad your Dad is doing better. Very lucky/blessed man. I enjoy the photos of the Christmas gifts. Will you be posting more including readers? No flowers left in Michigan, USA. Nice to see yours.
    Sheila S.

    1. Thank you Sheila. I hope to show more crafts and cooking from contributors. You have reminded me to ask on Friday for photos! I love seeing what everyone is doing. We are in summer now as of yesterday and lots of flowers. It is beautiful. My roses are the best in my garden. With love


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