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 25 October 2018

Feather your Nest Friday, 26 October, 2018.

It has been a big week.  It seems like a long time since last Friday.  It has been a mix of good things and not so good.

First of all Mum is in hospital.  She was suffering a really painful leg and nothing relieved the pain then went downhill in other ways.  So Sunday night she went to hospital.  She has a lung infection so was straight on to a drip of antibiotics and a buying disk in her back which is causing the leg pain. She is doing much better, still in hospital.  Yesterday though she was knitting again.  You know to worry when Mum stops knitting so this was a good sign!

The good thing... WE SOLD THE HOUSE!  It is official and now we are waiting on settlement.  This is so wonderful.  We have a list of things to do... new rainwater tanks, a ride on mower, fire preparedness and other things that really need doing.
Also... we can come and pick up our furniture!   All my nice things were still in the house to make it look beautiful for inspections.  My vases and flowers, plants, most furniture and outdoor things too.
At the farmhouse we have had a bed and a plastic camping table and two plastic chairs!  That is about it!  Hence very few photos of inside!   I will be very excited to get my things and set up rooms!

Some of the ways we built up our home and got ahead this week included:

Chloe and I went to a farm open day.  They grow all kinds of flowers and veggies for sale.  On this day they sell preserves, fresh veggies, seedlings and set out tables and chairs and serve tea and cakes. It was gorgeous!  We toured around their veggie garden.  This was just the rhubarb patch...

I was so inspired.  Chloe said it make her gardening feel inadequate! haha!
I came home with many ideas,  a big bunch of rhubarb (for Dad)  basil seedlings and four tomato plants.  It was so much fun!  There is so much to learn and these are opportunities to see how other people do things.  They demonstrated many alternative incomes they have going too.

In the kitchen I cooked up a giant batch of spaghetti and meat sauce.  This made many meals.  The left over meat sauce I thickened with gravy and made two dozen meat pies.

With left over pastry I used some frozen plums (from last summer) and made plum pies.  They were really good!  I gave half of all this to Chloe and Luke and froze some.

Last week my sister in law gave me three dozen eggs.  So I got busy and used up quite a few.

I made Mum GF scones.  I always add an egg to these as it helps them rise.  Then I made GF pancakes.

She did eat two cakes before she ended up in hospital.  We froze the rest.

Then I made six Christmas cakes.  Making them now is ideal as they get better and better with a few weeks to age.  These used 20 eggs!

I will wrap some up as Christmas presents.  Usually I tie a gold bow or something with a tag.  Some will go into the pantry for when I just need to feed people.  Andy being one of those people as this is his favourite cake.

Chloe recycled all her wedding flowers.  She made me a huge arrangement of wild and dried flowers with some fake ones added.  No one would ever figure out which is which.  

Soon I will have a hall table to put them on!  I love them.  They will always remind me of the wedding too.

Luke let us use his ride on mower to bring the wider yard under control.  Aside of actual lawn around the house we have a big area to keep neat under the gum trees.

Soon we will have our own mower! 😊

In the garden I have so many things coming up!   Giant sunflowers from Jane, beans from Sewingcreaions...

It is less than six weeks since we moved and there was no garden at all.  Just weeds!  Now we are almost ready to start harvesting the first things like lettuce leaves...

I am getting a bit nervous about rabbits, birds, sheep.... now things are looking tasty someone is going to be bound to try and break in.  But so far so good.

Every time I go to the farm (Mum and Dad's) I get the ladder out and climb up to see how the babies are doing.  These are Grey Shrike Thrush.  The parents are practically tame.  They are really big now!

Before heading to the city I made the girls some cakes...

I made a dozen but only four got the fancy treatment!

It was only yesterday that we found out the house is sold as the buyers finance was approved.
This is still sinking in.  We will come back next week and hire a truck to move our things.  I will also have my fridge/freezer.  There are so many things I am excited to set up!

I have been reading and reading a blog called Frugal Measures.  Now you all know I follow A Working Pantry and do Patsy's Classes.  There are so many wonderful blogs and websites.  I feel like I need a lot of good "food" to think on.  Well I am adding Frugal Measures to my list of those.   With not having TV I am finding things better and reading more things that are useful and inspiring. 

How did you build up your home, save, get ahead or add to your pantry and preparedness this week? 
What are your goals in these areas before 2018 is finished?  It gets so busy as we get closer to Christmas!  I did go through my present cupboard and I have about three quarters of my gifts!  So now I have a list of things I need to get and need ideas for a couple of people.

Today we head back to the farmhouse.  I can take my houseplants, flowers and vases!  So excited! 
Have a wonderful weekend! xxx


  1. So sorry your Mom was feeling so bad. glad she is doing better now. Prayers for her continued healing.
    YAY - how wonderful the house sold. I am sure you will be so very happy to get your things in the new house and have it all set up and finally BE HOME!

    Sounds like a really good week.

    1. Dear Cheryl,
      Thank you! Its such a relief. Already we got plants, flowers, vases etc back home. Already the difference they make is amazing!
      Have a wonderful weekend! With much love

  2. Annabel what a wonderful news-y post! So much good happening! You are on a whole new life path and it must just be so exciting for you all. Great news on the settlement of the house, and what a relief it will be to get your own furniture into your new home. A camping table in Annabels house? It's just not right! The gardening is inspirational, and what Chloe has done with the wedding flowers is divine. I hope your Mum is well and truly on the mend. I'm mainly in project finishing mode here. I start my new corporate role on November 5, so I only have a week and a bit to finish my unfinished stuff, and we're off for a mini break next week, so two days of that week and a bit will be gone anyway. I've finished painting for now, and our bedroom has a whole new glamorous look with furniture redone in black satin finish, with hand painted faux tortoiseshell on the desks, and tortoiseshell guitar pick guard sheets repurposed as the surface on the chess table. It's very different, but we love it. I'm madly sewing and trying to get cushions and bits and pieces done now. I love it, but whilst it's good to have a deadline to get things finished, I'm not loving deadlines as such. I guess I'll have to adapt to that! Looking forward to seeing your new home, and more wedding photos. Have a lovely weekend! Love, Mimi xxx

    1. Dear Mimi, The plastic table and chairs will be back in the shed soon!
      You have done a lot before you head off to work.You will enjoy the bedroom for years to come though with all you did.
      Mum is still in hospital but brighter. Pain is so awful, i she can get relief from that it would help so much.
      Yes finally I will show more of inside the house with stuff in it! I am so excited! Have a good weekend! With much love

  3. Oh that is so great Annabel about selling your house! I'm glad you will have your stuff back and your farm can feel more like your home. Your garden is looking lovely and you will have a nice salad this week it looks like. We are just making sure everything is done here for winter. Today husband filled up the wood box and we just keep storing things away in the sheds. Of course we are making sure the snow blower is front and center ha ha. Have a great week.

    1. Dear Vickie, Getting ready for winter must be a big job. Getting ready for summer here is the big one. Although now we will be building a woodpile for winter. Thank you! Already I have my plants, vases and flowers and they have made such a big impact! So exciting! With love,

  4. Yay! Congratulations on selling your house!! That will be so great to move your furniture and pretties to the farmhouse. Have fun setting up your nest Annabel! I have been building up my home and getting more organised by doing the FlyLady program. There are so many things I want to do around my home, and FlyLady helps me to decide what to focus on next! Have a lovely weekend everyone. Cheers, Kelly

    1. Dear Kelly,
      I love Flylady. I still clean out my handbag and car on Fridays! I still do the weekly house blessing, set my timer, tackle things in 15 minutes and they get done! Her methods are very sensible. Consistency moves mountains.
      Life is so much better when we feel on top of things rather than them on top of us!
      Thank you... it is really fun to make things inside nice now. Just my plants coming home with us yesterday have made things look so nice! With love

  5. Congratulations, Annabel, that is such good news with the sale of your house! It will be lovely to have your own things around you at the farm. Your garden is looking so good, and it will be amazing when you can harvest and eat your own produce. I hope the local wildlife don't get too greedy lol

    Love, Fiona xxx

    1. Thanks Fiona, I am working on finding places for everything. A few things I have worked out repurposing for. Some iron lace work is going to be in the garden to train climbing things up like cucumbers or beans. By the end of next week I will have everything home! With much love

  6. Annabel and Bluebirds,
    So sorry for my absence, but I am getting back on track. It has been busy and crazy as well with one thing after another so I will do a catch up. The garden did beautiful this year and the cellar is full of all of the goodies I canned plus some in the freezer. We just last week mowed off the gardens until next season. I was going to plant a Fall garden, but it is too cold so that idea is out. Annabel your garden looks wonderful! I am drooling already!
    The well got a leak in one of the lines so we have been without water for awhile and are just now getting the trenches for the new line dug because bouts of rain would back fill where we had dug and the yard was muddy so we have been using our stored water thank goodness we have it, the water in our rain tanks and water from the neighbor's hose. My mom got hurt and has been down for a month so far so I have had to do a tad bit of caring for her and the other day Rick got a deer so the butchering began. I am happy it's done! So I can say pantry wise we have added plenty of home canned foods and deer meat an all of the deer meat scraps have been cooked and ground for dog food. A stray kitty showed up and decided she is staying so staying she is. She is very loving and seems tiny compared to the 20 pound fatties my other cats are. I guess I'm a big softie when something shows up hungry. And I have been without a vehicle all Summer. But life goes on and we do what we must!
    Just glancing at the sales one of the local grocery stores has turkeys for .49 a pound. You can only get one at that price, but I'm going to. I have been decluttering daily and have donated lots of things and sold two purses for $40. Rick got the new wood stove installed except the duct work. We bought it on clearance last year and pricing the same one this year we really did get a bargain! Dollars or pennies it adds up. I hope everyone has been well and happy and has a great weekend!

    1. Dear Vicky, You have had a very tough summer. No car alone is difficult, no water! Very hard. The deer was excellent! That should last you a long while.
      With the turkey, can you go get one, Todd go get one, Rick go get one? I would say your Mum too but not since she is injured. This is what we do with one per customer type offers. Really good deals are less now we are finding so we are upping our tactics!
      The wood stove will be very good. You will be so glad if it is a cold winter. Many people seem to think it will be extra cold but I guess we will wait and see on that. With all my new garden I am hoping not to have heatwaves this summer. I am trying to get everything established as I can and mulched.
      I hope you have a lovely weekend and the new week will be good and with water restored! With love

  7. Dear Annabel,
    Congratulations on the sale of your house. That is amazing and will free you up in many ways. Sorry to hear that your Mum is in hospital and hope she gets well soon!
    The garden looks great and I can't believe how much you have achieved in such a short time. I look forward to seeing how you decorate your farmhouse now that you can move all your furnishings.
    I am in awe of your Aunt's garden and all that she does in her 80s. She looks fantastic and I bet she's a heap of fun. I will certainly be trying to track down her books at the library.
    Hope everyone has a great weekend!

    1. Dear Del,
      Thank you! I am going to see Mum this afternoon (Sat. afternoon)
      I am adapting my style a lot for the farmhouse. Much will be the same just more farmhouse. To help you with the book my Aunts name is Kate Llewellyn. You might like the gardening themed books I think. They are lovely.
      Thanks so much you have a lovely weekend! With love

  8. How wonderful, your house is sold and you can move your furniture into the farm house. Exciting times coming up as you place all your special pieces.
    Everything takes on a new life in a different house. Might be why I have moved so much.

    1. Dear Cheryle, Thank you! I also love change and re arranging etc. This move is a big change. I am trying to decorate in a style that makes sense on the farm... some things will remain in I like light, white, space and flowers. My light fittings will be the biggest change!
      It is fun. And a process that never seems to end! Have a good weekend! With love

  9. Annabel,congratulations on selling your house and now you can buy those things you really need for the farm. Renos started here this week so I have been going through kitchen cupboards and sorting in readiness for the builders to move in next week. It has been a noisy week I must say. LOL!

    1. Dear Nanna Chel, Thank you! I hope the renovations go well. It is a lot of work. But it can be also like spring cleaning, re organising, everything all in one. So it is really good that way. Have a good weekend! With love,

  10. I hope your Mum is well and truly on the mend and i hope she gets to come home soon. I will say prayers for your Mum. Your garden looks beautiful. I loved your post with your Aunt's garden where she grows lots of different things, not just edible things. What a great idea. Chloe is very artistic with that flower arrangement. I would have loved to have gone to that open farm day, what a great idea. We have planted our mango tree, I am so happy about it. When we planted it we put a whole bag of prawn shells and then it shot up quite a lot. We are yet to plant the lemon and avocado. We now have a worm farm though. My son is very excited about that, he wants to feed them, and finds it great the tea goes on the plants. It is great for them too. Sending you love, Bridge

    1. Dear Bridge,
      It is great about your fruit trees! And the worm farm! Things like this are wonderful for the kids. I wonder if you have room for chooks? mmm :) I find it amazing that I do a bit each day in the garden and water of course daily. Each day it is growing. Beans are up! Snow peas are up! Sunflowers too. Stuff is growing. The outdoor time is good and with kids they want you outside too so you can be doing something and they love it.
      Off to see Mum shortly. I will tell her you wished her well thank you!
      Have a wonderful weekend! With love

  11. Dear Annabel ,sorry to hear your mum has been unwell and in hospital,what a fright for you all. I hope she continues knitting and is home soon feeling much brighter.
    Your cakes for the girls always look so enticing I think Miss E here would love them ! I have one small plastic ballerina in the pose your decorative ones are in (arabesque )from when I was young , and I put that on Miss E's b/day cake awhile ago , it made her day! It fascinated her as much as it did me when I bought it all those years ago.
    So pleased for you and Andy that your city home has sold and soon your furniture can be placed in your new farm home.
    Your veges are coming along well! I wonder if a large sheet of fine mesh would add as deterrent to wild life supported by slim post sticks to keep it above the plants heights..

    WE have been away for this last week to our regular place by the lake , the weather was sunny ,and our unit light and airy so that we could have lunch and dinner on the patio well into the evening, which is not something we can do at home , as we lose the sun late afternoon.
    I thoroughly enjoyed being in this smaller space and from the patio we could here the Tui birds and fantails and others around , the greenery and blossom trees were just beautiful . WE went to the mineral pools one day when it was quiet and basked in the sun there too like lizards hahaha.I managed to knit two fancy scarves, a change from crocheting which Ive not done this last winter .I did manage to find a couple of patterns to suit the yarn I have in stock at home and want to use up, for my next project .
    The farm market with Lucy sounded fun for you both . Have a lovely weekend furniture moving, and hope your mum is feeling much better .

    ON another topic ...essential oils...IM pleased to report the copycat PLague Defense I made up fixed the very tender gum spot under my lip. My glands on neck were very tender and that has all gone now. Also a another skin irritation that was red , I applied the same to it and it is on the mend IM very pleased to say . So thankyou to you and all here for your advice on oils this year , it has helped me tremendously.
    Have a lovely weekend everyone, with love, Maria xxx

    1. Dear Maria,
      I think your idea of mesh is vey good! I think also this might help me in the really hot weather to filter the sun a bit. Chloe has loads of lace tablecloths left over from the wedding... we got them in op shops to start with... I might use those!
      The place by the lake sounds heavenly! I love the sound of the birds you see!
      If I have a sore throat or swollen glands the plague defence or oregano oil have so far worked EVERY time. Im such a convert!
      I hope to do lots more on oils as we settle in. I have an essential oil bracelet I love. There are beads that absorb the oils. I have a necklace too... I will show it soon. You walk around in your own personal cloud of fragrance and if you have something that is heavenly to you then it is bliss. What is right changes... today I am a bit headachy so I have lavender peace. Its really effective.
      I hope you had a wonderful break and have a good new week. With love

  12. Great news about your house. You can really get your farmhouse organised now with all your things about you. Glad to hear your mum is on the mend. You sound so happy in your new home. Really trying to get focused on Christmas here. It will be upon us before we know it. I am encouraged to get moving on cakes and puddings after seeing your lovely ones.

    1. Dear Chris, Cakes and puddings made now are wonderful. They make good gifts. Especially for anyone who doesnt cook or is super busy. I do little ones that make good gifts for individuals i.e. the uncle on his own etc.
      Later I will do shortbread etc. but the things we do now are so handy.
      Thank you, we are so lucky to have sold and have settlement before Christmas! With love

  13. How wonderful that the house sold! So exciting for you!

    1. Thank you!! This is such a help to us! xxx

  14. In the States, the Hallmark Channel is beginning to show their Christmas movies all day. It has become a tradition to show them in November as well as December because there are now so many of them. I love to watch one of them once in awhile, especially when I'm very tired but it still shocks me each year how soon Christmas really is on the calendar.

    What a great idea, making only a small number of the cupcakes "fancy" and using it as a centerpiece. I am so going to "borrow" this idea.

    1. Dear Brenda,
      I love a good Christmas movie! Yes I think like with a wedding cake you have the fancy bit then the plan part that is cut up and served. I will only do so many of the really fancy ones. The cake ballerinas can just go on the next cake too and be re used endlessly.
      I need to catch up on your blog.... I saw a link of fb earlier. With much love

  15. I am glad to hear that your Mom is on the mend. It is hard to see elderly parents struggle with their health. My Dad has just been through a time of falling almost every day.

    Your pictures will not show up for me on my phone here at the lake house but I can imagine how beautiful everything is. It will so nice to have all your things moved and to be able to be comfortable there at the farm.

    We have been tucked up at the lake since Sunday. Lots of sleep and rest and today very cold and heavy rain. We are staying in and having Chicken Pot Pie soup. On a day like today we can actually see the lake level rising. When we get home we have an appraisal on our house to get ready for so that we have the funds available to easily buy another house. I also have to get going on Christmas. I just don't know where this year went.

    Have a wonderful weekend!

    1. Dear Lana, Tucked up at the lake sounds gorgeous to me. How exciting re the house!! It wasnt until after the wedding I realised Christmas is so close. I could only think about the wedding at the time.
      I hope the right house appears at the right price. So exciting!
      I made up some essential oils in a weak dilution for Harper. She is 3 and a half now. I want to see if these help her sleep better. She has always been a dodgy sleeper.
      I hope you enjoy the rest of your time there. Relax and make the most of it! With love
      Ps really sorry about your Dad and his falls. What a

  16. So glad the house sold and you can really settle into your new home.

    1. Thanks so much Diana! Yes this is such a help!xxx

  17. Dear Annabel,
    I am so glad to read that your house in the city sold. Prayer answered, for sure.
    You might have mentioned this in a previous post and I forgot, but do you make your own GF pie crust for those small pies? Your crusts always look wonderful.
    Also, are your fruit cakes GF? They look absolutely delicious. I pulled your recipe out to try it this upcoming week. We have quite a lot of dried fruit on hand, so I want to use some of it up.
    I am doing a challenge to use up everything in our three refrigerator freezers in the next month. The two freezers in the garage will be following....; especially, the vegetable and fruit freezer. The meat freezer is, of course, an ongoing rotation thing.
    Since I am trying to change a few things around here, for meals, I want to use up all we have and, basically, only buy what we intend to eat each month. We will always have a food storage of depth, but I intend to go about using it a bit differently from now on.
    Chloe did a gorgeous job on the flowers.
    Have a great weekend!
    Love and hugs,

    1. Dear Glenda,
      Yes thank you for praying. It took a month but that is really good actually. Now for settlement to come around!
      Yes I do make the gf pastry for the pies. If you Google Maggie Beer gluten free pastry you will find the recipe. It is easy and very good. It rolls out nicely.
      I am excited as I will have my other fridge/freezer by the end of the week. I will be able to get much better organised.
      Thank you re the flowers. Chloe's bouquet was AMAZING and she did it all. One thing for sure the flowers were abundant at that wedding.
      Have a good week Glenda! Love

  18. Annabel I had Dad in Hospital last week after a collapse. I understand how you must be feeling. Hope Pat is out of Hospital soon and back to her normal self. Please give her my best. Dad is home and I have been down to see the folks overnighting with them.

    I have been on a no spend campaign. The only money that has been spent is on household pantry supplies and Bluey has been the shopper. Whilst at Mum's I went with her to a shop that only sells leather products. I now have a much needed pair of slides for summer. Leather and a really good price. Winner.
    I have been re organising my garden beds in the vege patch. I have been moving a lot of plants as well as re organising the raised garden beds. It has been hot so this is only happening in the evening.
    Bluey and I are working on a small area out the front. We have a paving project on the go. I am hoping this will make it easier to keep the front area tidier. It is a slow process but it is happening.
    I cant wait to see your sunflowers in bloom. They are a plant that just makes me smile. When the flower head dies you put it in the chook yard and your chooks smile. They are a wonderful plant.
    Life is good.

    1. Dear Jane,
      Thanks... Mum is coming home today. I hope your poor Dad is improving. It is very upsetting to think of him collapsing.
      The sunflowers are growing! I fed them some compost this week. I planted them in front of the deck so if they grow high they will peek over the top of the deck. My main worry is birds will get them! But so far so good!
      Ricky the parrot and the chooks will share the actual seeds later on, both will go nuts over them I think!
      I have six chooks ordered, proper egg producers. I am working on finding nice nesting boxes now.
      I hope you have a good new week! With love,

  19. Hello Annabel and everyone and hope you all had a good week :).

    Annabel firstly I hope your Mum gets better shortly and she will be in our prayers. IV antibiotics usually work really fast fortunately and I hope they sort out her back problems too.

    You baking as always looks divine and the farm open day sounds wonderful and your gardens look lovely. We are doing the opposite and deconstructing ours for the move and harvesting and preserving what we can.

    Our Vicky challenge added up to $206.45 in savings last week :).

    Home organisation -
    - Packed almost 2 complete rooms in the house into boxes with the contents and which room they will go in when we get to our new home.
    - Decluttered and threw out a lot of rubbish.

    Earnings -
    - Made $10 from the sale of 50 g of organically grown English lavender picked and dried from the gardens.

    Purchases -
    - From eBay we purchased a 12 pin - 7 pin trailer adaptor, a 50mm tow ball and and tow ball cover for the new to us Ford Territory saving $66.70 over purchasing them locally.

    In the gardens -
    - Harvested 15.25 kg of broad beans saving $106.75 over purchasing them in the shops.
    - Saved a few plants with lots of broad beans on them and are drying the beans for seed stocks to take with us to our new home.
    - Harvested a lot of thyme we currently have drying on a drying rack.
    - Separated 100 g of thyme from thyme we picked and dried from the gardens saving $23 over purchasing it.
    - Weeded 2 x 9 mt garden beds.

    Have a wonderful week ahead everyone :).


    1. Dear Sewingcreations, You would have loved the farm day. The garden was right up your alley! But I think in a year from now you could hold your own garden tour and sale! They sold a lot of seedlings. They went like hot cakes I noticed!
      Packing up is a big job. I know what its like! But all you do now will pay off so much. You will be unpacked and set up in no time.
      I cant believe how many broad beans you harvested!! I have some broad beans now about 10cm high. Daily I can see them growing. I cant wait to be harvesting! All the beans are doing well.
      Also I have five thyme plants and they are all doing well! I keep adding all the sheep manure, compost etc I can find!
      You will be so busy with packing so thank you for sharing your week. Have a good week now, I hope you make lots more progress!
      With much love,

  20. Annabel so glad your mum is better and the house has sold. And all that rain to water in the lovely new garden. It's a shower of blessings time isn't it? I have Frugal Measures, and two or three other blogs in a special bookmark file called "Study In Depth"...Guess how I mean to spend my Saturdays?

    In my home this week I've painted my shed, picked up a load of limbs and pulled loads of little privet bushes with thousands more to go, sigh. Rainy year and long spring equalled loads of seedlings landing in my mulch this year.

    I was busy in my kitchen making 3 pints of yogurt, 5 cups of granola, 2 casseroles and 2 dozen rolls...Oh and a big crock pot of soup that netted me soup enough for 3 meals. I consider it a great week!

    1. Dear Terri,
      I like your "study in depth" file. I kind of think this way... I will read something and think I need to come back to this and actually study it. Study and think over! I love finding things like this.
      You did so well! I got to comment.. I follow you on instagram and so often think how glamorous you look!
      You did beautifully in the kitchen! Yum! Today I used up some of my yoghurt in banana cakes... it calls for sour cream so I just use the yoghurt in its place. Yoghurt is so useful!
      Have a good new week! With much love

  21. Hi Annabel
    I hope your mum's pain goes away quickly and she is able to return home soon. I like that you can see her knitting as a sign of improvement!

    Wonderful news about the house, what a relief for you. And how nice to be able to set all of your furniture up, I'm sure you have it all planned!

    It is finally raining here so hopefully our tanks fill and the strawberries start to perk up a bit!!

    Have a great weekend
    Jen in NZ

    1. Dear Jen, I hope you you that you get plenty of rain to fill the tanks. Now we are at the farm I am so conscious of this! And the effect on the garden! Noting does plants so much good as rain. I can hand water but after a rain everything looks amazing.
      I cant wait to set up furniture and rooms... I have had all these empty rooms!
      Mum is coming home tomorrow. Her leg pain looks like it could be a pretty long term issue but she is doing much better overall. Thank you!
      Have a good new week. I bet you are making things for the kids for Christmas... I need to get show and tell going again just so I can see! With much love,

  22. Annabel, I hope your Mum gets better soon. It's hard when our parents are not in perfect health. I can't wait to see more photos of your new home.

    Here's my frugal list for the week -

    * Made pizzas for dinner using up bits and pieces from the fridge and freezer. We used this recipe to make the bases. So yummy and far better than anything we've had in a restaurant or from takeaway.

    * Decorated a few department store gift bags so I can reuse them for birthday present giving. I'll put a birthday or other occasion stamp on them when it's time to use the bags.

    * I packaged up the last batch or handmade soaps to sell at a craft / garage sale. The ribbons tied around them were saved from gifts over the years.

    * Gratefully received extra cleaning work at one of my jobs. The client wanted his business shirts ironed and extra Spring cleaning done.

    * Bought a few packets of nappies form Coles at half price. The packaging is changing so they need to clear out the old stock. I'll keep one packet here and the others will be for Megan's baby.

    * Found a few more goodies at Savers op shop. Baby coat hanger bundles for $2, pasty cutters for $2, a Bob The Builder doona cover for $10 in it's packet and a waterproof cot sheet for $5 also in it's packet. I also used a 10% stamp on my card.

    * Picked a couple of bunches of iceberg roses from the garden. They are so elegant in recycled jam jars.

    * Picked silverbeet for two meals.

    * Ate from the freezers as much as possible including morning teas of muffins and pumpkin scones.

    * Froze a couple of serves of leftovers.

    * Took morning tea snacks, water bottles and lunch with me when at my cleaning jobs.

    * Purchased a few Christmas and Mother's Day presents when The Body Shop had a 20% off their online store.

    * Used up a few samples of body wash and face cleanser.

    * Darren did some online research to get a better deal on my car insurance. He saved about $130.

    There are a few photos of what I've been up to on my blog

    1. Dear Wendy, Thank you! I thought your pizza looked delicious. I save the store bags. A while back I was given a big bag of them and I decorated them all. They were good quality and sturdy, perfect to make over for gifts. Very handy. This Christmas I am doing a big use it up wrapping theme. I have a ton of ribbons etc. I run the ribbons through the curling wand ( a hair straightener is good too) and they are like new.
      That was a good savings on the insurance! Have a lovely Sunday! With love,

    2. Annabel, I kept all the ribbons you used on packages you sent me. They are so elegant. I've reused a few for wrapping handmade soaps.

  23. Dear Annabel,
    Congratulations on the sale of your house!! I feel certain that you'll be full speed ahead in decorating now that all of your belongings can come to Bluebird Farm. I was glad to read that your Mum is doing better. We will continue to pray for her complete recovery.

    As for nest feathering I ran into a humongous bargain this week at our little Amish store. They had organic low sodium uncured turkey bacon for 99 cents per package, $11 for a case of 12. At the grocery stores they're $4 per package. I got 2 cases to stock in the freezer. Savings, $72. They also had organic honey roasted sliced turkey for 59 cents per package, 2 for $1 or $4 for a case of 8. I got 2 cases, spending $8 for 16 packs, which would have been $5 each in the stores, with a savings $72. Total savings $144. All of this will last for quite a while. 3 dozen chocolate chip scones were baked and frozen, as well as 3 large pans of brownies. Made a roast for dinner one night and all of the leftovers were put into a shepards pie for later use. I also made and sent out 4 birthday cards. With the cost of cards here, that saved at least $14 as we have to go a distance to stores that would have them. Lots of decluttering took place this past summer and I decided to part with fabrics and other supplies that I had but never got around to using and they got donated to the Linus Project to make quilts for children and teens in need. Also boxes of books to the library and kitchen utensils no longer used to the Rescue Mission.

    I'm really looking forward to show and tell coming back to see what all of the beautiful creative Bluebirds are doing. Hard to believe that Christmas is just on the horizon. I hope everyone has a good week. Blessings, Cookie

    1. Dear Cookie,
      Thank you! It has been a whirlwind! I am loving decorating now! And setting up my craft room as you can imagine... Now I can imagine actually getting to craft again too.
      You did wonderful shopping. We just have to take full advantage of these deals. They have been less and less. It is the price of fuel plus electricity here. This is sending everything up. So prudent shopping and cooking is important!
      One roast meat I am often left with is pork roast. So now I learned to make pork pies. Roast meat is so useful.
      It is kind of a relief to donate/give away materials you wont use. I never end up using a fabric I dont really like. But someone will like it and use it! It frees up time and space for projects you do love and will do!
      I am really looking forward to Show and Tell too.... we maybe have to have several as everyone probably has lots to show. They are a joy and full of frugal ideas. So I cant wait to see what you have been creating! Get photos ready! With moving I just had to drop it for a while. Getting the old house sale ready, actually being on the market, moving, starting a garden... I just couldnt do it for a while. Hopefully in a couple of weeks we can do it then next year we can go to a routine again!
      I cant believe Christmas is so close either.... lots to do.
      Have a lovely weekend Cookie and thank you! With love

  24. Dear Annabel,

    First of all, I hope your Mum is doing much better!!! I agree that having her pick up her knitting is a good sign. Best wishes for a speedy recovery!!

    Also, CONGRATULATIONS on selling your house!!!! I am so happy for you! This will be lovely...being able to move your furniture into your new house and make some purchases to make your lives easier at the farm. Hooray!!

    I always love seeing pictures of your cakes. I managed to get some green tomato mincemeat made this week. If you haven't tried it, it sounds horrible, but tastes divine! Glad to have that ready for tarts at Christmas. Otherwise we have been busy with company this week, though I did get a couple of canner loads of tomatoes done. We have tomatoes ripening all over the house...fresh tomato pasta for supper tonight! :) Hoping to get back into routine this week and get a head start on some Christmas crafting.

    Hope you have a wonderful week!!

    Love, Jen in NS

    1. Thanks so much Jen! No I havent heard of green tomato mincemeat! But I believe you as anything tomatoe seems to taste good! Tomatoes are useful! You will put them all to good work I know!
      Now Show and Tell is coming back so get your photos ready I want to see everything! With love

  25. Hi, Annabel,

    I've been out of town and couldn't wait to get back and catch up with your news. So glad your Mother is better. If I'm watching tv in the evening and don't feel like picking up my needlework, I know I'm getting sick. Even before I have the first symptoms, I can tell because my hands are idle. Sounds like your mom is the same. Needlework is like a health barometer!

    Great news about the sale of your house. Now you can really settle into your new home. And just look at your garden! I am so thrilled for all you've accomplished and shared with us.

    I was inspired to buy some cupcake toppers because you always make yours so special. I bought circus animals, though - not sure how my 3 little grandsons would re-act to ballerinas!

    Happy nesting!

    1. Dear Phyllis, Me too! If I dont feel like anything creative it is a bad sign. In my past this has meant Im a bit depressed or like you getting something, something like that.
      If I get Grandsons I will be looking for little tractors, farm animals... for my cupcakes. You could use plastic farm animals, I could do cows and sheep! Imagine that! Kids are easily impressed luckily with my cake decorating skills! haha!
      Show and Tell is coming back soon so I am hoping to see some of what you have been making and I know I have a few pictures you have already sent me too, thank you!
      Sorry I took so long to reply! With love

  26. Dear Annabel,
    Congratulations on the sale of your house!! This is so exciting and I imagine a big relief. Now you can really get settled in at the farm with your things. I will be looking forward to your photos!
    This week we purchased more seeds for the garden as many of ours didn't come up. We replanted and already have seedlings that have sprouted.
    Something happened to one of our little chicks. We called her Mini because she was about half the size of the rest, a runt we think. I was sad to see her gone as she was a favorite. Thankfully the rest are doing fine.
    Colton cleaned up more or the coop and took out some of the pipe frame that had been holding it up. He put stakes in the ground marking where the new garden shed/coop will go. He is wanting to get started on it.
    I reworked the budget so that we are saving the money coming in monthly from the sale of our house in town. We needed to use this while Colton was in school and I was pregnant. Now we are in a position where it can be saved, as we had intended. This is such a blessing.
    John is walking now! He still falls down quite a bit but he is really getting it. He loves wearing his shoes and his cap, it is so funny. He also still loves to go check the cows with Grandpa :)
    That is about all that is going on here except for the usual day to day (which keeps me very busy lol). The sun has been shining and the pleasant weather has allowed us to open the windows. It was a good week.
    I am so sorry your Mum was in the hospital. I hope she is much better now. I am praying for her.
    With love, Kelsey

    1. Dear Kelsey, Thank you!
      Any seeds I plant that are bigger i.e. corn, beans, pumpkin etc I soak in a cup of water for a few hours first. This seems to really get them going! But seeds are hit and miss... I am having moe success now than I ever did before though! And you get good value from seeds! I hope yours all do really well.
      I always love the smallest anything, puppy, chicken, anything so this often leads to heartbreak! I hope all the rest do well now with no problems.
      It is wonderful you can now be saving that money!!
      It is great John is walking. He will soon be running! You will be running too!
      Mum is doing much better thanks. Today I really noticed an improvement. sorry I was so slow to reply... had city trips and Mum sick... it was crazy! With much love,

  27. I love all your photos Annabel, good to hear that Mum is improving too. The rhubarb patch on that farm is huge! Isn't it wonderful news that Adelaide has sold and you can now plan what you need for the farm. Your veggies//plants look terrific, you have achieved plenty in such a short time frame. You are certainly getting a good lot of use out of the pie maker. I remember when they first came out, my ex husband bought me one because he loved pies. After the marriage broke up, I got rid of it, I had been tired of only ever getting an iron, a vacuum, a pie maker, a toaster etc for my birthday and christmas. I'd consider getting one again, as we now have a few pies here and there. It will be lovely for you to get all your special bits and bobs from the other place and totally set up your new farmhouse. Looking forward to pictures. Fi xx

    1. Dear Fiona, I wish the same for you very soon! It is a relief! Next week will be an even bigger relief it should all be done by then. Then we can just get on here! So excited!
      I have so many spare meals frozen thanks to the pie maker! Fruit season will be good too!
      Tonight I had rabbits come a bit too close to the veggie patch. I was running out shooing them away!
      Sorry for my very slow reply. Travel and Mum in hospital... what a week! Many thanks Fi, with love

  28. Yeahhhh on selling your house...I have not long discovered and blog and am enjoying it... I too have started Christmas shopping....We have 11 children and 11 soon to be 12 grandchildren.....So lots of sewing shopping and fun at Christmas.....

    1. Dear Mandy, Thanks so much! Now I am sorry to take so long to reply to you! I had Mum in hospital and had to go to the city as well. First of all welcome! I am so glad to have you here!
      It is wonderful you have such a big family! Also amazing to have 11 and 11 but soon to be 12! Soon I will be back sewing. I want to do special Christmas pillowcases for my Granddaughters... Harper is 3 and old enough to really go crazy on Christmas this year. So exciting. You must be very busy but it is wonderful! With love


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