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 21 July 2016

Feather your Nest Friday, 22nd July, 2016.

It does me so much good to look back at my week. Today, especially, I can see I did much more than I thought I did!  Each day I note a few things so I don't forget them. I keep a pad on the fridge for this. And good thing too as reading it this morning I was reminded of things that seemed to be ages ago but no they were only last weekend! The week was much more productive than I thought!
It is easy to focus on everything we have to do and that needs doing. We really need to be pleased with what we have done and how far we have come!

Some of the ways I feathered the nest were:

I washed the windows. We have a lot of glass in french doors and big windows that look over our garden. The storms had made them a mess. So I washed them and it made so much difference!

I pruned our rose arbor which is a fairly big job and mostly up a ladder to reach the top so I am rally happy to have that done. My gardening gloves were torn to shreds though!

Also I pruned a Mop Top tree (which grows as a ball of green) and that was also a ladder job and that is finished too.

I cleaned my chandelier. And replaced globes. I love this chandelier but it is a big job to clean. And another up a ladder job!

Now I realise why I have sore legs.

The outside jobs were on several sunny days we had. Apart from getting all this done I soaked up some sunshine which is so good in winter and good for me. I slept well those nights!

Some of the ways I saved money were:

Making the most of the lemons I was given. I made a big batch of lemon butter.

This is so easy to make. The recipe is here Jars of Sunshine. It is good for when you have both lemons and eggs.

So this became my deserts and treats for the week. I filled a pie dish and it looked pretty (but don't give me too much credit as I just bought the base.)

Also I made mini pavlovas. 

I still have so many lemons but this was beautiful and luxurious and I have jars of lemon butter to give as gifts also. 

One night we had fridge pizza and used up lots of left overs both from the fridge and frozen. I made mini ones for spares. They were lunches as well.

I made three dozen sausage rolls. The last ones just disappeared. I share these around the family and the freezer. 

My Coles points turned into a $30 voucher. I went in an spent this on things to stock my pantry. I only bought really good buys and specials.

So these were my free groceries!

I embroidered tops for Harper, made several dozen hankies, worked a frill around little socks and worked on a crochet rug.

In the mail I got vouchers to help me earn points for more free groceries. I cut them out and stick them in my diary so I remember them. They come so that you have one a week and specific weeks.  So I carefully organise them.

I built up my pantry and added canned chick peas, flour, sugar, dried fruit and tinned tomatoes. From following A Working Pantry Facebook group I realised I didn't have a very long supply of shampoo and conditioner so I added several of each to my supplies. 

I got ahead by adding food to the freezer, gifts to the gift cupboard and also with what I added to the pantry.

This week Mum has been in Adelaide and she loves to have Harper over.  While they have a good fun time I said to Lucy to use this time to get things done that she has been wanting to do, rest and make the most of the breaks. So this has been fantastic for everyone. This is Harper and Great Grandma (Pat)

Apart from that I did the usual things, cooked the meals, line dried the washing, made the lunches etc.

It has added up to be a pretty good week. 

How did you get ahead, build up your nest and save this week? I hope it was a good week for you. 
On one hand the weeks fly by but on the other hand it is amazing how far you can come in a week! 
Planning what I want to do seems to help me do a bit more. So does sharing my list here.  I love Fridays for this reason! xxx


  1. What a great week you have had Annabel. I too have been quite busy, there were three days pretty much involved in a medical problem, there's been extra meals each night for the wounded pair, as I know you do for your family - it means a lot to offer that help. I spent hours in my sewing room and emptied the cupboard, all the fabric taken out and categorised and sorted, i have loads for animal pouches, need to find more flannelette for lining some of the pouches. I paid bills, saw my orthopedic surgeon, got together 15 baby formula tins - now all covered with paper to go under the tree at Christmas time with the recipients gifts inside. I cooked loads, scrolls, pastries, cakes and lasagna and cut up loads to keep in the freezer. Also spent a full afternoon out with the tractor collecting fallen firewood which gave several trailer loads of great fire starting wood to both wood sheds. So a busy week here for me, the busiest in a while. I'm seriously planning my new kitchen/family/study area as my investment property settles in just under three weeks and there will be $$$ allocated for that. Have you ever made little cocktail frankfurts into little pastry things? I used to keep some in the freezer if the kids had lots of friends around. Not the healthiest thing but will fill growing boys tummies very cheaply. I'd get a sheet of puff pastry cutting it in half and half and half until a very small square was there for each mini frankfurt, it was placed diagonally on the pastry and rolled up and a drop of milk to secure the pastry. Cooked it was really cute. I did see some not long ago in the freezer section of the supermarket and chuckled, they are the easiest thing to make and a good standby. Haven't made them for a long time but might chuck a few in. I also must make some sausage rolls too.
    Thanks for a great post. Fi xx

    1. Dear Fiona,
      You had a really big week! And I know that is on top of helping another household as well.
      Knowing what fabric you have and being organised is a big help. I need to go through my fabrics and do the same.
      I love what you did with the tins. When the girls see these they will all be saving formula and other tins.
      All the cooking and the firewood is wonderful.
      I hope you really enjoy planning your kitchen and pantry! How exciting to be able to make it over how you want it!
      I have made something similar to you except using sausages. They are essentially cheats sausage rolls where you simply wrap thin sausages in pastry, bake and slice. Everyone goes mad over them and as you say they fill them up! Some of the fast and easy things are very handy to know!
      Have a lovely weekend, just the last few hours the next change has rolled in and it is really cold, wet and windy again so I think it will be headed your way! With lots of love,

    2. Fiona, You sound so much like a wonderful auntie of mine. She doesn't live quite so far south as you. The language, the practicality and, I think, the way you appreciate the good things in life, come through. My auntie loves wombats! You're pretty special!
      Regards, Rachel

  2. Dear Annabel, thank you for another great post .i always love reading what you have been doing. That is a beautiful photo of your mum and Harper , they look like they love eachother very much.

    My week has included: gratefully receiving a beautiful gift from a friend, changing electricity companies back to my previous company for a much better discount. with the new company I was only going to be getting a 5% pay on time discount and pensioners discount also. My old company called me and offered a 21% discount and it doesn't matter if I pay on time or not.i will also get pensioners discount. This is a much better deal!. I have gratefully received meals from my parents . I have had 3 no spend days . I have put away $100 towards my holiday spending money. I have gratefully received some mandarins from my gran. I bought some Wiltshire cake pans ( pink on the outside which I thought you would love Annabel!) they were half price at Coles. I have decluttered my plastics cupboard and only kept about 5 things . I think that is it Annabel. Have a great weekend Annabel and everyone . Love BarbW

    1. Dear Barb, Well done on shopping around for electricity prices. That is a major expense.
      Also it is great you could save for your trip away. You are right that I think the cake pans sound beautiful!
      The decluttering is really good Barb, you will be able to repot that on Patsys fb page as it is true if we declutter we have more room for important things plus more organised and easy.
      How handy that your Gran has manderins. It is the time of year for them as they are really nice here just now.
      Have a great weekend Barb! With lots of love,

    2. Barb, Somehow, I am looking forward to your relaxing time away! You are value adding by sharing about your break with us!
      Regards, Rachel

  3. Dear Annabel I too have been noting down what I do each day to get ahead and here it is for this week

    Saturday 16/07/16
    • Took breakfast, Lunch, Snacks and drinks to work
    • Bought two whole chickens marked down by $3 each as close to use by date and I froze them
    • I bought home the leftovers and scraps from the main meal at work for dog food and made up eight portions for the dog saving me $5
    • Started a knitting project using wool given to me
    • Defrosted meat for tomorrow night’s dinner so as to be able to turn down takeaway if I am tired
    • Made pikelets and froze them for later use as well as having some for desert
    Sunday 17/07/16
    • Took Breakfast, Lunch, Snacks and Drinks to work
    • Collected leftovers from Lunch at the nursing home, home to feed the dog and I got 8 meals worth saving me $5 if I buy dog food on special and $10 if I pay full price
    • Found two knitting patterns free online that I will make next
    • Hung a load of laundry to dry inside whilst I had the heater on
    • Did some gardening for an hour
    Monday 18/07/16
    • Took Breakfast, Lunch, Snacks and Drinks to work
    • Accepted a gift of five kilos of toasted muesli
    • Hung the laundry inside on the portable clothesline when the heater was on
    • Took my refundable cans and bottles in for refund making me $62
    Tuesday 19/07/16
    • Took breakfast, lunch, snacks and drinks to work
    • Accepted a gift of Chicken and sweet corn soup (homemade)
    • Bought a dress 50% off at end of season sale saving $25
    • Froze left over soup for another meal
    Wednesday 20/07/16
    • Ate all meals at home
    • Worked on my knitting project using gifted wool
    • Cooked chicken that was getting to its use by date
    • Only drove if necessary taking DD to work
    Thursday 21/07/16
    • Ate meals at home
    • Met up with a girlfriend for a coffee. We turned down the temptation of a cake to go with it and settled on a small cappuccino each. It was the time spent catching up we enjoyed not a poor store bought cake.
    • Same girlfriend manages an op-shop and she gave me staff discount on two pairs of jeans and a new Noni B blouse, total cost $2.50
    • Turned down the temptation to buy a food processor. Saved myself the money as it was an impulse desire and I really do not NEED a food processor.
    • Sent my savings for this week straight over to my high interest savings account which I hold in a different bank to my day to day banking and it has no card attached. Stops temptation.
    Friday 22/7/16
    • Saved $1.36 using a voucher when buying petrol
    • Took breakfast, lunch, snacks and drinks to work
    • Banked DD’s board not touching it if I can
    • Bought 100 freezer containers at bulk buy shop to freeze soup and meals in single serves
    • Continued knitting a baby’s outfit using free wool and a free pattern I found online

    Hope you have another great week ahead. Much love Mel xx

    1. Dear Mel, You have been going really well! I find the same thing with the savings, if I shift the money I am not tempted so I am doing the same thing.
      The freezer containers are great. I have found with all the same and flat stackable containers I can fit much more into the freezer than with my previous random odd shaped containers that didn't really fit together. Plus it also looks neat actually!
      It is fantastic knowing someone who runs an op shop. In my old town I knew the op shop ladies and I used to help sometimes. They would happily watch out for things on my request list. That was fantastic. The discount you got was great!
      Mel as I am writing the storm has just hit! Here we go again!
      Well done on such a good week.
      Hava a good weekend! With love,

  4. Hi Annabel, I hope the storm isn't too violent and there's no damage. I write this in a cotton TShirt dress. We had a warm day today. It was the warmest day on record in some areas nearby, in fact it was 28.9 degrees Celsius near the Gold Coast. Tomorrow is also looking like being another warm one.
    This week I feathered my nest by making a new bathroom bag for Bluey. It's big, boxy and bright. I'm hoping he wont leave this one behind somewhere on our travels. I made this bag using what I already had in the craft cupboard.
    I have accepted that we cant hit the road until all infections have cleared up. Bluey has used the delayed leaving date to do some updates on the van. The indicator and brake lights have been replaced as have the plastic exterior handles.
    I have continued with the prep of the van. I have the dry goods all ready and in the containers in the van. All the pantry containers have been relabelled for easier access.
    My SIL gave me an overlocker 18 months ago. I have decided to regift this to my DIL. My SIL is aware and quite happy to see the overlocker going to a new home. The overlocker is now packed under the bed in the van.

    1. Annabel, I hadn't realised that I had sent the above. I sound so cold and thoughtless. So very sorry.
      I am in love with the photo of Grandma Pat and Harper. It is such a look of love going between the two of them, that it just makes me smile and go a bit gooey.
      Those little grub roses had me look in the embroidery floss box. No pink. Must address this.
      That chandelier is spectacular and must give the area a very grand feel. I don't envy you the up and down the ladder to clean, but my goodness it must end up feeling like a job well done.
      So sorry that my initial response was so cold hearted.
      Life is good.

  5. Hi Annabel!

    I hope you don't think I'm being repetitive ..... Your work is beautiful, beautiful, beautiful, beautiful and beautiful! Sparkly clean chandeliers, lemon butter, embroidery, baking and that photo of your Mum and Harper that should be cherished.

    My week was good. My plans changed constantly, and the week ended with rather unexpected happenings. This morning, Dad and Mum were to arrive first thing with a trailer load of scrap firewood. They didn't make it! Using a bush telegraph system, of sorts, (since we have no phone), we got their message just before we were heading off as a search party. Armed with large water bottles and Seal Tite for fixing engine leaks, we went to meet them. They ended up getting a lift home in a tow truck, while a complete stranger towed the trailer twenty kilometres to our place. He wouldn't accept anything in return, saying that if someone can't give a helping hand then there is something wrong. It was a humbling experience, for which we are grateful.

    I have decided I do not have basil plants - yet! I am looking forward to sowing more seed as the weather warms. I wandered in my garden area and found some seedlings that I do not recognise as weeds. They have two slender, long primary leaves, with the next leaf being somewhat feathery. Carrots are coming up! This is the first lot of carrots I've grown! It's exciting!!

    With warm regards,
    Rachel Holt

    1. Congratulations Rachel! I love carrots and I love canning them too!

    2. Hi Annabel!
      Your chandelier is gorgeous I love sparkly things. Your Mum and harper are so cute together it melts the heart. And your lemon butter is so pretty like sunshine!
      I painted an ugly brown thing that I am not sure what it is supposed to be a pretty black and I think I will use it for a vase or a candle stand. I was able to get a small amount of pantry work done this week, but mostly it has been garden stuff. We picked and canned pickles, Mom cut spinach, I picked a handful of blackberries and a few tomatoes. Laundry has been hung on the line and bunches of organizing the food that will go in the new pantry room whenever we get it done. All in all it has been a good week!

    3. Rachel we hear all about the horrid and nasty things happening in the world and around us, but we rarely hear the good. That stranger who did such a wonderful thing for you and your parents will have a ripple effect. By this I mean you will do something good for someone and then they will, and so on. There is more good in this world that we often realise. Thanks for sharing this lovely persons kindness.

    4. Dear Rachel, It is wonderful your parents were helped like that.
      And you have carrots! As we move into spring you will be able to sow a lot of things. I have big plans for spring planting too.
      Have a wonderful weekend! With love,

    5. Dear Vicky,
      You had a great week! The garden is really producing now and the busy period you predicted of canning and harvesting has hit!
      Well I know this is a lot of work but it is fantastic to have so much produce and be able to store, share, barter and all the things you do!
      Your Mum helping is excellent also.
      Have a great weekend! With love

    6. Thanks, Vicky! I admire the way you use your pressure canners to preserve even the non acidic produce. It is wonderful how you prioritise food. Thanks for a glimpse into your good work!
      Regards, Rachel

  6. Who needs a gym membership with all that exercise! A wonderful and productive week you had! Great job and great inspiration!

    1. Dear Lynn, Today I was filling the green bins again with rose pruning and other prunings and I was thinking the same thing! Then I hung a heap of waking on the line and came in thinking that hours exercise was pretty good plus its out in the sun which has to be better than inside a build, fresh air etc... and I got lots of work done! Its a win win for sure!
      Have a lovely weekend! With thanks,

  7. Dear Annabel,

    You are so right...thanks for the reminder to focus on what we've gotten done, instead of just what we still need to do! As a chronic list maker, I tend to see only what I HAVEN'T crossed off, and of course, I make fairly unrealistic (optimistic??) lists.

    This has been a busy week. Have weeded lots as the weeds seem to double in size each day. Made the first cutting of the swiss chard (silverbeet, I think, for you), and froze a bunch. Made yogurt and chevre; I gifted three rounds of chevre (plain, black pepper, and Greek herb) to someone in exchange for a German language book she gave to the girls. Cleaned the house thoroughly for the weekend, made sourdough French bread and baked custards, and I'm sure a bunch of other stuff, but I don't have a list in front of me.

    The deer were back again last night. Giant mammoth sunflower to a was too big to cover with deer netting anymore, so I uncovered it yesterday. I swear the deer are watching me with binoculars! Yes, venison sounds mighty fine to me, but they always seem to know exactly when hunting season begins and then they're nowhere to be seen! (And of course hunting season doesn't coincide with gardening season. :))

    Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

    Love, Jen in NS

    1. Hi Jen,
      Yes, the deer always know when it's hunting season here in the Northeastern U.S. too. and love to taunt us when it's not. Deer rabbits, ground hogs,chipmunks, and probably voles too, thought my garden was their very own cafeteria. No more.
      At the Ag center they advised me to use bloodmeal (great fertilizer as well as a deterrent), and to go to a barbershop or beauty salon and ask if they would give me the hair that they sweep up and lay it around the garden. This has worked very well for me so far. I do replenish both the hair and bloodmeal about once a month. I was looking out my kitchen window one morning and saw two rabbits sitting on the ledge of one of the raised beds where there were young, tender green bean plants. They just sat there, and finally hopped off the ledge and left, leaving the plants intact.
      Blessings. Cookie

    2. Dear Jen,
      I love that you make cheese. Im so impressed and think what a lovely gift too.
      I am reading Cookies reply about the human hair! Now I have not heard of this and Im guessing they don't like the smell and think a person is lurking... I am telling Mum this one! Also the blood meal. If anything like this could help it would be great!
      I know that you get lots done in a week. And I am the same with list making! While it helps get things done the list still to do can be daunting. But do stop and be happy with all you did in the week plus the ordinary things like keeping the household going and all the meals and normal things as they are such a lot to be thankful for.
      Sundays I tend to plan (and write lists) and the end of the week I review. So I get to enjoy that feeling of accomplishment for a little bit!
      Have a lovely weekend. With love,

  8. Dear Annabel,
    I am drooling over all of the lemon pastries that you made. Anything with lemon butter is a great favorite here. Good to know it can be made in the microwave. The picture of your Mum and Harper just melted my heart. So beautiful.
    This week was mostly about the kitchen, garden, adding to the pantry and freezer.
    My dehydrator book said that cucumbers could be dehydrated and then put into a brine at a later time for pickles, and since I've had a bumper crop of cucumbers I dehydrated a bunch. It should be interesting to see how all this works out. Also dehydrated 3 pounds of onions which dried down to a quart jars worth. Added a quart of stringbeans to the freezer. Whole chickens were at an excellent price so I bought 3 and cut them into parts myself and vacuum packed them for the freezer. With the livers I made liver and bacon pate, and the gizzards went into the freezer to be used later for making chicken stock.
    I had a very early appointment (8:00 am.) a few towns over, so I stopped at a grocery store there on the way home. They had just put their meat out that was reduced in price even though it hadn't gone out of date and I was able to get some of that. While I was walking around the store in I saw in one of the freezer cases that they had a product called "Aussie Meat Pies". Yes, here in the U.S. they are now selling meat pies in the freezer case. However,I'll be making some of my own this weekend using your method.
    I made 3 pounds of uncured salami style summer sausage and froze 2 pounds, with one pound left out for sandwiches. Also made zucchini "cheese" with a recipe from Pinterest.
    We're having a long heatwave going into next week, so making sure the garden was well watered has been a priority. I also made some natural bug spray in hopes that it might help eliminate the beetle population, but so far I don't think it's really helped. We do have the bait and bags to attract them, but I think they much prefer munching on the kale and cabbage, as well as the weeping cherry tree and the echinacea.
    I've been working on creating more space for food storage and also decluttering the garage. It looks like there's a storm coming up here so I better close down my computer. Wishing everyone a blessed weekend. Cookie

    1. Cookie,
      I have dehydrated cucumbers and made them into pickles they are pretty good in my opinion!

    2. Hi Cookie!
      My husband was incredulous to hear that you didn't know what a meat pie is!! He says that a meat pie is to Australians what an apple pie is to Americans!
      Now you've seen meat pies in a shop! These are totally enclosed in pastry. I am just learning to bake these pies the way my husband likes them. The pastry (puff or flakey) shell is blind baked to prevent sogginess (I use dried beans to stop it rising). Last time, I then brushed the pastry with egg (also to prevent sogginess), added a seasoned meat filling that was thickened with cornflour (this should be quite cool) and then added the pastry top, and baked. Rested overnight in the fridge, this set nicely. Once reheated, it is generally served with a mildly spicy tomato sauce. I'll remind you that I am just learning! Anyway, you live in pie country. You might give some tips yourself!!
      I have a question for you. Are chokoes generally grown in the US?
      Regards, Rachel

    3. Thanks, Vicky. Making pickles this way looked like a great idea and so much easier than canning them. The book also said pickled beets could be done that way as well. Blessings. Cookie

    4. Dear Cookie,
      The lemon butter makes up in the microwave like custard or white sauce etc. It is so quick and easy. Mine takes about 12 minutes, in increments. No standing and stirring for ages.
      Well done on the dehydrating. I love dehydrated onions! They are so handy.
      I never knew that meat pies were not usual there. I am glad you saw Aussie meat pies! They are yum. When I was little my Grandparents took us to the football on the weekends. The best part of the trip in my opinion was we would have meat pies at the football!
      I am glad of your food storage plans. We all have some fairly creative ways to store it!
      I am impressed with the salami you make. Feel free to share how you do this!
      I hope the week will not be too hot but keep cool as you can. Here we are trying to keep warm!
      Thanks for sharing your week! Oh and thanks for the tips about keeping deer away. With love

    5. Hi Rachel,
      Nope, I sure didn't know what a meat pie was. Mostly I was unsure of how to make the filling for one. Thank you so much for your tips! It's wonderful to learn new things as well as new ways to do things I'm looking forward to trying my hand at it and storing some in the freezer.
      I've never heard of Chokoe's, but that doesn't mean they don't grow here under a different name. Warm regards. Cookie

    6. Hi again, Rachel
      I googled chokoes and yes, we do grow them here. Here they are called chayote squash. I have bought them in the store but have never grown them. Hmm, maybe something different in the garden next year. Blessings. Cookie

  9. Good afternoon Annabel...This week I painted some flower pots I had on hand and repotted some succulents and herbs to take to my son as a house warming gift. I cleared my kitchen counters and put back only a very few things. I set up a basket in the bath cabinet where I can easily grab my spa day items. I also moved extra items into the pantry proper which netted me a neater space. I made an ottoman cover from a cream linen curtain panel I'd purchased long ago. I went to market in the next town to pick up whole chickens on sale for a very good price. A friend stopped by to trim an overhanging tree branch with his pole saw and gave us 3 dozen ears of corn. I put those in the freezer. I took time this week to empty the big freezer and rightly organize it so I can find all my foodstuffs easily. I've been receiving packages all week long. I ordered a few sundresses and tops on Zulily and many came in today. They were very inexpensive and are quite nice. I plan to wear the dresses about the house. I was so tired of looking poorly kept! I worked on our third quarter budget. I am always shocked that on paper our budget simply does not work...and yet we always always have more than enough to manage in fact. I know it's because we take Malachi for truth and tithe. God proves the test every single time! I list things more fully on my blog: Hope you have a lovely weekend!

    1. Dear Terri,
      That is a wonderful testimony. Many of us will say this... on paper something isn't possible. But it happens or works out. Giving and tithing and the promises of God are bigger than numbers on paper. This is for sure. But sometimes we need reminding of it.
      Last year I took on something and thought it might be a strain (financially) but felt called to do it. We have been blessed over and over in many ways that has well and truly covered it so we have noticed no financial difference.
      I love that you will wear sundresses at home. They are cool and feminine. Lovely.
      It was brilliant using the curtain to cover the ottoman. A great source of fabric.
      Well done on everything that was a very good week! Many thanks Terri, with love

  10. Annabel I love that photo of your mum with Harper. You were right in telling Lucy to take advantage of others looking after Harper for her so that she could get things done or have a good rest.

    This week my husband had another dental appointment so he was home that day. I have developed a routine with him out of the house which means that I can do things without needing to worry about him walking on wet floors. Even with the warmer weather we had yesterday the bathroom floor took all day to dry.

    Wednesday I had my eyes rechecked and am now waiting for my glasses for close work to be made. My eyes are not that bad but I cannot see to thread a needle to do repairs and as I am entitled to some glasses through the health fund every year I decided to bite the bullet and get a pair for just this sort of work. In the end I was entitled to 2 pair so I have 2 exactly the same, just in case I put a pair down (which I often do with the glasses I have) and not be able to find them (probably in my mending basket.

    I then went to Coles for my second week of spend $50- for 4 weeks and get 10,000 points. When I do not have anything that we need I head to a couple of areas - the first being my herbal tea. It was on special so I picked up the only carton they had (10 packets), then I checked the price of the enamel ware. It had been marked down to clearance price so I picked some up.

    I did notice that pink baking items had also been reduced but I wanted the enamel ware so just concentrated on that.

    My game plan is that the next catalogue is usually available to view on line late Monday afternoon. If there is nothing in it that we need then I will pop in and see what is left in the enamel ware and also the pink baking items line.

    Apart from that I did my usual things around the house, took advantage of our unseasonal weather and washed the bedroom curtains and the heavy underlay on our mattress.

    Cooked all meals at home. Monday night my husband arrived home to stew in the small slow cooker, I had a meeting to go to so he had what was wanted and dished up a plate for me and there was about 3/4 of a cup left over. He popped that into a container and I turned it into a pie for him (using Aldi single serve pie dishes) for tea Tuesday night.

    Still working on cleaning out the freezer. A few months ago I purchased a lot of single serve take away containers and that is what the soups, stews etc have been stored in. While the snap lock bags can be used I have found that some of the seams have split and they are not as robust in the freezer.

    I have also popped over to Jenny's blog and found that she has some free patterns that are perfect for the stash of tea towels I have here - another reason I will need my glasses.

    Just need to find my fabric stash now.

    My friend has found another 3 large coffee jars for me as well.

    Farm Fantastic is on again this weekend, we are not going because we do not need to find out about anything. I have decided that I want to see the Miss Fisher exhibition that is on at Old Government House - costumes from the TV show which is based on the time that my grandmother was a Costumier. She may not have made the expensive items of clothes that show up in the show but she would have sewn the other items that you see.

    I am also still sorting out my craft corner just 1 more thing to pop into the space and something else to move out and it will be right.

    Have a great weekend everyone.


    1. Hi Lynette!
      Can you tell me what you most enjoy knitting? Do you crochet, as well? I'd love to see your work!!
      With warm regards,

    2. Dear Lynette,
      I did the exact same thing with glasses. I had a free pair I am entitled to through insurance and for fine embroidery I had special ones made. I have them now, didn't cost a cent extra. And they are really helpful. I was embroidering this afternoon and now I can see heaps better this minute stitching and am so pleased. I hope you find the same.
      Our Coles doesnt have the enamel ware. It is not a very big Coles. I am thinking I should go to a bigger one from what you have said.
      I saw the lovely t towels! They are on my list as I loved the designs!
      That was a good week Lynette. I have started saving Coles points again, our system seems different... we do not have the $50 over four weeks but we do have $30 = five hundred points every couple of weeks over a few months.
      I hope you are having a nice weekend, with love,

  11. Lovely photos as usual Annabel. I really must start making lemon butter this season. Our tree has lots of fruit on it. Here's what I got up to this week -

    * Gratefully received lots of colored folders and car magazines from Joy at our card making weekend. The magazines have wonderful photos of vintage cars that I can use to make men's cards.

    * Gratefully received a fuel docket in the mail. Thankyou Tania.

    * Made lots of cards over the weekend that I will hopefully sell very shortly.

    * Pureed six oranges and portioned them into single serves to freeze. They will be used throughout the year to make whole orange cake.

    * Cut up some wrapping paper to use in my card making. The paper had little shoes and handbags on it.

    * Saved the inside of a few envelopes for card making.

    * Saved the shower water for the washing machine. Saved the washing machine water for each next load

    * Picked two armfuls of lemons from our tree. This coming week I'm hoping to pick and juice lots.

    * Filled up all our cars when petrol was as low as $1.00 a litre.

    * Did my monthly food shopping on Friday and it came to $169.27. This included three loaves of raisin bread ( one was marked down to $1 ), two packets of crumpets, one packet of breakfast muffins and some muesli bars for Megan ( school ). I don't usually buy all these ready made things but with the kitchen renos starting shortly, I won't be able to bake for a little while. The crumpets and muffins will be handy for lunches on the run when we are packing and unpacking the whole house.

    I'll still be doing weekly top ups of milk fruit and veg as needed.

    * Dried most of the washing on clothes horses with a few items dried in the dryer.

    * Turned the heater off for two days when it was a little warmer. I also tried to close the curtains around 4.30pm each day when the air outside cooled down

    * Took my car to the mechanic because a couple of warning lights came on. The mechanic checked everything over and couldn't find a fault. He didn't charge me anything which was a huge blessing.

    * Made a whole orange cake for afternoon teas.

    Have a great week Annabel xoxo

    1. Dear Wendy,
      I discovered that lemon butter freezes perfectly so this is something I make overtime I get lots of lovely lemons.
      I love your idea to use the car magazines for mens cards!
      Well done on your shopping and especially the raisin bread for $1! It will be so exciting to get your new kitchen. I can't wait to see it. I do remember what it was like as ours took a fair while and it was a bit like camping. But worth it! We have to go through this yet with the bathroom. In Spring, all things going well. I will be glad when this is done!
      Thanks for sharing your week Wendy, it was excellent. With love

  12. Annabel, your lemon goodies look so good and what a beautiful picture of Harper and Great grandma! We are in such a busy season with harvesting and preserving and building up our pantry that the weeks are just flying by so I understand needing to make notes on what we get done each week lest we forget. We are starting to think about planting our fall garden ... where has the time gone????

    1. Dear Patsy,
      I am thrilled to read your pantry is filling back up and you've harvested so much! I am interested in your fall garden. We grow a fair bit in autumn and into winter but we do not have snow and can have winter vegetables. But with snow this must be different.
      I hope you continue to have a good harvest and squirrel away more into the pantry! With love,

  13. Dear Annabel,
    Here's the link for the salami style summer sausage recipe. frugalfarmwife dot com./summer sausage. I like this recipe because it doesn't require using any curing agents such as nitrates and nitrites. I have altered it just a little. I find that mixing the meat for about 30 seconds to a minute with mixer or food processor
    breaks down the muscle and gives a more "cured like" texture. I reduced the salt to 2 teaspoons of salt rather than what she calls for and I've doubled all the rest of the spices as we thought it was just a bit too mild for our taste. I've also made this with ground turkey dark meat and it's come out perfectly too. I use it sliced for sandwiches, antipasto salads, appetizers and now I'm thinking about trying it as a sausage roll. Please let me know if you think it will work. I was excited to hear that the lemon butter also freezes well. xoxo Cookie

    1. Dear Cookie, Thank you! As sandwich meats cost lots I try to make things, roast meat and slice it and make pastrami etc myself. But I haven't tried anything like this! Thank you! With love

    2. Dear Annabel,
      Sandwich meat is expensive here too. I'm always looking for ways to create things at home. I've never tried my hand at pastrami. I was wondering if you could tell me how you make yours. Also I forgot to tell you that uncured pepperoni can be made at home as well. Again, I've done it with beef, pork, and turkey, or a combination. It's just a matter of altering the seasoning and a different cooking time. I found the recipe on pennilessparenting dot com/pepperoni. Since it has a longer cooking time and it's summer here I usually use my toaster oven or slow cooker and put it on a rack so as not to heat up the kitchen. It's very authentic tasting and great on homemade pizza, antipasto salads, and I've also used it in calzones. xoxoCookie

    3. Dear Cookie,
      I don't know if my pastrami is "proper pastrami" but I was told how to do this and it works wonderfully well.
      You start with a piece of corned beef. This in itself is great sandwich meat and my husband loves it. To me it seems men love this. Anyway I watch for it on special and cook it in the crockpot. You cover it in water and add a good splash of vinegar, bay leaves and lots of peppercorns. Let it cook all day. End result is tender deep coloured corned beef.
      This is good lunch meat but to make pastrami you dry this chunk of meat off, roll it in a layer of cracked pepper then roast this on low for about an hour. This basically intensifies the flavour and dries it out. It is then dense, strong and peppery. Once cold you slice it thinly since it is rich. It goes a long way as you don't need much. In my large crockpot what I do is place two corned beef and then one we use as is and one becomes pastrami. This gives me dinner (corned beef with potatoes etc) and heaps of meat for packed lunches etc.
      The corned beef part will suit your summer kitchen as no need to turn the oven on for that.
      Hope this helps! With love

  14. Hi Annabel,
    It is good to know that lemon butter freezes well, I shall make a heap next time I am in lemons. I also wanted to tell you that we tried the golden syrup pudding (we call it butterscotch pudding) with homemade golden syrup and it was fabulous! Maybe it was a bit more toffee tasting than golden syrup tasting, but still fabulous!
    Thankyou to Cookie for the tip of using blood meal in your garden. A possum has nibbled all my spinach seedlings and is helping itself to peas and lettuce every night...I will sprinkle around some blood and bone and see if that deters him. We had more unwelcome visitors the other week, a fox dug in and killed all our chooks :( And our neighbours chooks the week before. We got some more, after fortifying the chook pen so it looks like Fort Knox (!), but they are very young and won't be laying at least until mid Spring.
    I love the look of those huge sausage rolls, I have to make some this week! What do you put in them? I always put veggies in mine so the kids get an extra veggie kick, but they never taste as good as the meaty meat ones.
    And how happy does Harper look with her Great Granny :) She is very lucky to have so many generations of family to love her.
    All the best,

    1. Dear Peach,
      Thank you for telling me about the pudding! And Im glad you liked it!
      We have possums here. Depending on the size of your garden and the area of interesting food for them out solution has been a sensor light the comes on when movement sets it off.... the light comes on blaring in the direction of our fruit trees. We have it so that the light stays on about three minutes. Thats enough, they can't stand it and move off. Otherwise we just get no fruit.
      Oh no about your chooks. That would have been so upsetting too. Foxes are very persistent. Over the years we have had serious trouble with foxes.
      I have a few sausage roll recipes. I like to include grated carrot. The worlds easiest ones are just buy sausages you like (on special is good and unskin them, add what you want i.e. tomato sauce, some grated veg etc and make your sausage rolls. Another is to use mince and add the inside of a heap of pork sausages or pork mince. And your preferred extra ingredients, breadcrumbs etc. Pretty flexible. Jamie Oliver has good recipes he does a giant sausage roll like a roast and also a mix with grated carrot. I seem to get on well with his recipes.
      It is a big help having a big family. My Nan was a help to me with Chloe and Lucy so they grow up with Great Gran and Great Grandpa as well. Two Great Grans actually. I had help from them and from Mum. Now I hope I get to do the same!
      Have a great new week Peach! With love,

  15. Hi Annabel

    Great Grandma Pat and Harper both look so happy together, such a wonderful photo of them both.

    My mouth is watering at the sight of the lemon butter and the pavlova's (not doing my diabetes any good even looking at them)

    I too have had a few big savings over the past week but will list them a little later.

    Today DD6 and some friends went swimming in the creek (yes I know it is winter) but here it was a very warm 30 degrees whilst the adults sat and had some nibblies and a chat, on of the kids caught a fish with just his hands which made it even more exciting for them all.

    Well I hope you have a wonderful week ahead and that you took plenty more photos of Harper and Great Grandma Pat

    Aly xxx

    1. Dear Aly,
      It must be so much warmer there! Swimming in the creek sounds lovely! We are having hail stones if that gives you the idea of our weather!
      I hope you have a great week ahead too. Much love,

  16. Dear Annabell,
    You had such wonderful week. What a blessing to have your mom visiting.The picture of her and Harper is precious. I feathered my nest this week with a lovely box of meals that everything comes in the box and was delivered to our door. It was a gift and so amazing. It included all food and spices and recipe cards. I got to try some some new things and we really enjoyed the new meals.It is summer here so it is quite warm.I put an umbrella over my container garden on the patio of the condo. We have baby bell pepper, Basil,celery started from the bottoms of the stalks and rooted in water and then planted. I also green onions the bottom white part started in water 10 inches tall and ready to use in cooking. I also was careful to use up all leftovers. Organized the frig. freezer and and pantry. So I just mostly shopped at home which was wonderful because the weather was so warm. I froze many left overs into single serves to be heated in the microwave. My daughter did a quick trip to the 99 cents store for fruit veggies and a few staples one night when it was cooler. They even have organics, It just shows the mark up on produce, Have a very blessed week your treats look amazing. Have a blessed week.
    Love Patti


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