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 13 December 2018

Feather your Nest Friday, 14th December, 2018.

I might never get this posted today as my internet is hardly working.  I type a little then go away for a while while a picture tries to load!  So it is very slow going.

It was a really big week!  I am glad I keep a running  list of things we achieved as last Friday now seems like a long time ago!

So in totally random order here are some of the ways we built up our home, saved and got ahead this week.

We got five young hens that are meant to be super good layers.   My niece Georga helped raise them at her school.  So she helped me to get them and bring them home.  And she helped me name them with some helpful suggestions!  They are so tame as they are used to a heap of teenagers looking after them.

This is Maise...

There are five.  So far I have Janet and Maise.   Overnight I kept them in a large cage within the chicken house to make sure the bantams weren't mean to them.  They all seemed non plussed this morning so I let everyone out together.  These girls were so excited!! They flapped around, ran everywhere, tried out various perches.   So happy!

My sister in law gave me two nesting boxes for the chook house.  This was great.

I started picking tomatoes.   Suddenly there are enough to pick a few everyday...

We had extreme weather.  At the beginning it was hot.   Then a giant thunderstorm started up.  There was lightening all around and it went on for hours.  In summer lightening is a huge hazard.   And sure enough,  Chloe got a call there was a fire.   I was at her house when the call came through.   We jumped in her car and drove to the top of the farm hill.   We knew which direction to look and sure enough we could see a plume of smoke.   At that moment Luke drove past going so fast I couldn't believe it!   Everyone heads off to fight the fire immediately. 
I went home.  We put on the sprinklers and began to get ready should it grow and come our way.  It turned out to be only one property away from us.  The local fire crew and the farmers got it out.  We were so lucky.  It was not windy and that was a huge help.   So now we had a practice run and it was scary.   
After this the clouds and thunder and lightening finally came to something and it rained.
By the end of the week it was raining again. And raining and raining!!  It has just poured.  
On Bluebirds Facebook page I posted a clip of how our birds sounded the other night.  You can find it here.   You need your sound on.   This usually goes on in the evening and then once it is dark it goes quiet.   Last night the birds went on after dark and through most of the night.  This has never 
happened before.   Maybe after so much rain?  It was weird... all the day birds chattering all night!

During the week we went to the city.  The main thing was I went with the girls to see Father Christmas!! It was so exciting.  

Scarlett is keen but Harper said she wasn't feeling very brave and Scarlett could sit on Father Christmas' knee but she would sit on Mummy's knee.  I asked her what would she like for Christmas?  She said "something yellow."  

We got a lounge!! Yep something to sit on! haha!  Our old lounge was the lounge Mum and Dad had when I was growing up!  Andy remembered it from when we were teenagers!   To his credit Andy was the only boy in the district brave enough to knock at the front door and ask to see me when I was sixteen.  And we went to dances together.   :)   
Anyhow back to the lounge.... I finally had to accept it is pretty had it.   So we ordered a new one.  Yesterday we picked it up.  As it was pouring so much we only just brought it inside today.  

Also we had an electrician come and now we have light fittings instead of a globe hanging from the ceiling!  More progress!

My friend Nerille just came back from Nepal.  She brought home pure cashmere pashminas for me in my favourite smoky blue shades.  They are just gorgeous and feel incredible.  Bring on Autumn!
She also sent me home with two large pure wool cream blankets.   With having extra beds here suddenly all my spare linen is no longer spare.  It is all used so these will be so handy.

Andy has been working on a big project.  He is putting shelves up in the shed and a workshop, work bench etc.  This will be really good in all sorts of ways.

There was a tractor in the yard as we had to do plumbing work.  We also asked for a quote on two new rain water tanks... as two are old and leaky.  

Andy ordered a trailer.  Now we have the vehicle and the next thing is a trailer.  At the farm you have your own dump and waste disposal. You have to have a trailer.

All these things I consider important "pantry and preparedness" projects.

On the way home from Adelaide I stopped and just near the car I found a little nest that had blown away in the storm...

I have glittery Christmas birds so I think it will become a Christmas nest.

I planted Proteas.  Suddenly I just love King Proteas.  So I am going to try and grow them!

I made a giant rice salad and gave Chloe and Luke a container full.   We lived on cold meat and salads on the hot days.

Everything being so wet gives me a couple of days off watering.  This gives me some time to work on other things!  Also the rain water tanks are all overflowing.  The fruit trees are looking heavy with fruit and being so wet.  

Later this afternoon Chloe, my Sister in Law,  Georga and me are going to head off to a country Christmas market in a town about an hour away.  It is an evening market.   Chloe has been before and says it is beautiful!  

With being so busy I have not felt like it is Christmas or that it is all so close!!  Going to see Father Christmas helped!!  Tonight will too I think!  

Since the last Christmas market and the small country market before that I am working on a post of craft ideas,  packing, selling etc.  It is very interesting seeing what everyone is doing.  It is good to check out prices.   Also to see what is obviously selling really well and what is not.   I have some prices that will amaze you... like the fruit cakes the other day! 
I hope to get this post finished over the weekend.  

How did you feather your nest this week?  I hope you are doing well with this busy time of year.  Somehow we have to find time to soak in the moments that are special.  As we get closer to Christmas I more and more start thinking about the year that has been.  In my mind that is like a gigantic Feather your Nest Friday... a Feather your Nest Year!! 

Have a lovely weekend! xxx


  1. Hi Annabel,

    Aren't your new chickens gorgeous, but not as gorgeous as your granddaughters and daughter (I'm assuming that's who they are, sorry if I get it wrong, I haven't been reading your blog for very long)

    I love storms, but they do have their destructive/terrifying side. You sound like you are very aware, and prepared for any potential issues.

    I harvested my beetroot this week, and turned it into 6 jars of sliced pickled beetroot, just in time for Summer! My harvest was very disappointing, I think I have soil issues, so I spent some time researching no-dig garden beds this week, and as a result I purchased some compost, and put it straight on top of my soil with out digging it in. I've planted seeds of lettuce, zucchini and more beetroot. This is an experiment, so it will be interesting to see how things grow. I'm feeling called to really ramp up my vegetable gardening efforts, mostly from a nutritional benefit, but of course it is cheaper to grow your own.

    Have a lovely weekend, and I look forward to your craft post.

    Cheers Cheryl

    1. Dear Cheryl, Thank you!! Yes that is my daughter Lucy with Harper (oldest) and Scarlett. They were so excited!
      The beetroot sounds just beautiful. I love the colour. I love preserves!
      Soon the soil will kind of dig itself once you have worms. I am adding everything from tea leaves, manure, straw, anything I can lay my hands on. I hope your seeds do well. I think growing your own is brilliant for many reasons. I keep adding to mine too, to keep the season going as long as possible and when one lot is finishing another lot is coming on i.e. with the tomatoes and basil.
      I am working on the craft post. So many ideas the market was amazing! Many thanks, with love

  2. So glad you've had some of this beautiful rain, full tanks at the start of summer are a huge blessing. I remember well the sirens and then the pagers going off for fires. And watching the smoke and the wind. I had towelling nappies for all three babies, and when Hannah was finally out of them, they were all bleached and then packed in the fire kit. The boys would wet them and then tie them around their faces to keep the smoke down. After the fires they'd come back and I'd scrub, soak, wash, scrub, soak some more, wash again and repeat until they were clean and ready for the next fire. I came to hate that sound, and even after we moved into town if there was a fire Wayne would drop everything and race off. That's probably the only thing I didn't like about farm life :) Praying the rain will bring lots of grass and that the summer will be mild so you won't have too much worry about fires. Enjoy your Christmas market, it sounds beautiful and I'm sure you'll have a ball and find lots of goodies you'll be able to replicate. Love Cath xxx

    1. Dear Cath, It kept raining and now it is a gentle drizzle but it is still going!!! Happy fruit trees too.
      The damp cloths across the face are a good idea. The fires are probably the worst thing about farm life for us. The current damp situation is a relief. Next year we would be better as more trees will be removed etc as we only have about 8 weeks of work time and we worked so hard but then fire season began and we could burn and clean up no more really.
      I did love the market. So many ideas and good to check prices etc. Working on a report!
      Enjoy your Sunday! With love

  3. Dear Annabel,

    Wow that was a huge week for you. I sense you are pretty busy these days with the day to day chores of running a farm and by the sounds, the joy it brings. Sounds like everyday can be an adventure!

    So glad to hear you had rain. Rain is always good and welcomed. We missed out again, however we did get strong wind and dirt!

    I have had a busy week having picked up another cleaning job. The good news is I now have a month before I work again, so I can get stuck into Christmas preparations. Have had the grandies around a lot this week also, which slows me up for obvious reasons. The two youngest are at a beautiful age, where they are full of mischief and wonder. They love coming to Nan's!

    I look forward to the period after Christmas when life slows down and I get to plan more things to achieve in the New Year (or not lol!) Still waiting to make soap, it just didn't happen this year as planned.

    Hope you have a very happy weekend and week. Enjoy!

    Love Tania xoxo

    1. Dear Tania, Things for you are like here... I look forward to the quiet days after Christmas as I love that time of year so much!
      It is beautiful that the Grandkids love coming to your place! I love the age mine are at too, everything is a wonder to them it is beautiful.
      Have a lovely Sunday. I hope you did get some rain by now. Also you will love soap making. It is addictive! It is much easier than you first think. The results are amazing. So when things quieten down grab the opportunity.
      With love

  4. Sounds like a very productive week. I am so glad you got rain - the scare of fire has to be horrible.
    I have fresh tomato envy! Yum.
    Hope you had a wonderful time at Christmas market.
    Have a blessed weekend.

    1. Dear Cheryl,
      Yes it was a good week for getting things done!! We are up in the city now, Andy is picking up the trailer then the mattresses for the girls beds. Then home again! We got more rain too!
      Have a very happy lead up to Christmas week! With love

  5. Annabel,
    Your Granddaughters are growing so fast. They are so beautiful. I bet they can't wait for Christmas to arrive.

    You are adding to your Farm so well and with great intent. The chickens are so pretty, I do so hope they provide you with many eggs. Hoping you will be able to add more water tanks for collection before the summer dry spell arrives. I see both You and Andy are adding to pantries.

    You were truly blessed with wool blankets from your friend, they are so expensive here. I am praying I find some at thrift shops next year to add to my dwindled usable linen closet. Our winters are bitterly cold.

    We celebrated our 24th anniversary recently and added a rug to our family room as our gift to each other, much warmer now in the room. I considered it an addition to our winter house pantry, it is amazing how much needs to be added for winter preps here as you prep for summer.

    I pray you can continue to add to your pantries and all needs are meet.

    1. Dear Rosanne, You have a lot to prepare for with your winters. I thought the pure wool rugs a wonderful help. Possibly in summer you might find some, like out of season it is easier to find things.
      The floor rug sound lovely. It would add warmth to the room.
      Today we are getting our trailer!! This will be so very useful. Its first job is to pick up the single bed mattresses for the beds for the girls!
      Oh so that is another preparedness step too right!?
      I hope your week is going well! So close to Christmas now!! With much love

  6. Dear Annabel,
    So much excitement! Those fires sound terrifying. I guess every place has its natural hazards, though. In my area, tornadoes are the scariest events.
    Is there a better combination than children and Christmas? Christmas time has the magic back now that I have grandchildren. I love the meaning of the season and it's always been my favorite holiday time, but there's no question that the children add to my joy.
    Such wonderful news about the chickens. I'm always tempted to get chickens, but am not sure I could fit in one more thing to do. Maybe someday.
    Beautiful tomatoes! It's an adjustment to think of growing tomatoes this time of year. It's cold here, of course, and we have a lush winter garden, but, boy do I miss the taste of a tomato fresh from the garden!
    I had to look up Proteas - beautiful! So many varieties, though. You have such a green thumb, I know you'll grow beautiful ones.

    Blessings to all,

    1. Dear Phyllis, I agree most places have their most common disaster, ours is fires. Tornado's sound terrifying to me too.
      Children make Christmas wonderful!! So happy and exciting I agree!
      I think you would love chickens. Getting set up is the main thing, after that a few minutes a day. But they are joyous, always happy, nothing is wasted... I love them!
      The Proteas I most want to grow are King Proteas. But I planted a few varieties all with huge pink flowers. I really hope they grow!
      Have a good week, I am sure it will be busy! Thank you for showing me your latest card too, I am so behind I am not sure if I thanked you! It is so lovely! With much love

  7. I am so thankful that the fire was contained and you were all spared. Thank you Lord for sending the rain! The little girls are adorable! And wow those birds! I received a sweet surprise in my mailbox today and I thank you so much for thinking of me. I am always glad to help any way that I can!

    We have had snow on the ground for an entire week here which is very unusual. I am so ready for it to be gone. It is now raining so it will melt but everything is just muddy. We have our Christmas tree up and all the gifts are wrapped. Boxes have been mailed off to loved ones far away and the stockings are hung for those who can make it home this year. We are looking forward to those grandchildren's arrival! It is time to bake cookies and get the guest rooms ready.

    I am looking forward to January, too. It is our cozy time at home in the coldest month of winter.

    Merry Christmas to you and your family!

    Much love, Lana

    1. Dear Lana,
      Thank you! The girls are now almost the same size and often in the same dresses so soon they will look like twins I think.
      You have a long distance to mail the parcels but how excited they will be! What an exciting time... cookies and guest rooms... we are doing the same here!!
      January is good here too... it is hot though. But we usually catch our breath after Christmas and I love that time.
      Have a good new week! With love

  8. Hi Annabel, firstly love Janet and Maisie. They are too cute, and will be loving the big shed and paddock as opposed to being at a school with noisy kids. As for kids, omg Harper and Scarlett look like princesses. Hope that Santa can find something yellow lol.
    Glad the fire was contained, it's scary and so destructive.
    My fridge broke down unexpectedly on Saturday morning, took until Wednesday until it was repaired. It was only a year old. The fan was broken. So i had to replace all my shopping. They said I could put a claim in but it would take 10 weeks total! What the? This is 2018 not 1923. Couldn't believe it. Mind you the dogs and chickens were happy to be given so much ham.
    Got an open for inspection in a couple of hours so best go.
    Have a great weekend. Fi xx

    1. Dear Fiona,
      Thank you! I hope they repaired the fridge fro free given its age. I would put the claim in. I think taking so long to process a claim is just a boy to put people off from bothering!! At least with animals nothing goes entirely to waste and they all had a feast!
      Good luck with the inspection. Someone will fall in love with the property!!! With much love,

  9. Dear Annabel,
    You had a good, busy week! I'm so glad the fire was put out quickly and that you got some good rain.
    I wrote things down this week, hooray! I hit some pretty good sales. I saved on groceries and craft supplies, and purchased a few clothes for John on clearance. With my $25 store points this week, I bought a set of 5 onesies for my friend's baby girl and 2 warm tops for John's next size. I got these on sale too, so I really stretched my points.
    I also found nice 100% cotton sheet sets for $10 off which made them a bargain, so I got four sets. Only certain colors were on sale so I only got one set for our bed. They are light pink! Colton said he didn't mind sleeping on pink sheets if I liked them. I think I'm going to feel like a princess! The other three sets are for when John grows into a regular bed. Thinking ahead here.
    I had a few bananas that were overripe so I made your banana cake. It was delicious! And you were right when you said it makes a lot lol. I made two small cakes (I sent one to the neighbors), twelve muffins for the freezer, and twelve mini muffins that John and I ate on the spot. The neighbors sent us home with eggs as they have been doing these past few weeks.
    I made some magnets for John out of magazine clippings. He loves magnets so this was an easy, fun, cheap project. Honestly I think I am more excited about them than he is at the moment lol. I will have to send you pics.
    The biggest savings this week was a gift from my dad. He found an Excalibur dehydrator at the pawn shop for $20!! These retail for $293.00!! He told me about it and asked if I was interested and of course I was so he went and got it for me. He wouldn't let me pay him. He said he just wants a cut of whatever I dehydrate in it. This means deer jerky lol. This was actually last week, but I got it all washed up and ready to use this week. It didn't need much, it looks like it was never even used!
    My savings came to $493.24.
    Around the house I am doing a little decluttering, mostly just general upkeep and reevaluating what I use/wear and what I don't.
    Our project outside is building a fence around our yard. We have the materials, and now we are just waiting for Colton's schedule to allow for renting some equipment. It is a big project on our to-do list so I am excited for it to be finished!
    I hope the market was a lot of fun! I am really looking forward to your craft post. Have a lovely weekend, everyone!
    Love, Kelsey

    1. Dear Kelsey, Well done on writing things down. You will feel really pleased when you see how much it all adds up to.
      You did stretch that $25. Good shopping and you helped someone else too! It must be fun getting to to this each week! I think it was for a month but not sure.
      This is really cute about the pink sheets. I have heard a lot said about men that wont allow a flowery quilt cover or curtains or feminine things. Andy pretty much has the attitude he doesn't care less as long as he gets to sleep in the same bed as me lol.
      You had a big cook up! Oh yeh... my recipes tend to be big! But now your freezer is built up too! :)
      The magnets are a good idea!! This could be an idea that catches on as kids love being able to stick things on the fridge...
      Well done on great savings. The fence will be a great thing, for your veggie garden, for John when he really takes off and for many reasons.
      My craft post is up now. I think you will find some of the prices interesting! Have a good week! With love

    2. PS ! I alost forgot... the dehydrator!!! Oh my goodness they cost a fortune. Good on your Dad! This is the best thing ever Kelsey! You can add to your pantry in many ways. xxx

  10. Annabel those little girls of yours are such adorable little babes. The chickies look like inquistive little beings. Hope they come into lay soon.
    This week we had a bit of fun. Katie has moved out recently but she came home for a night during the week. On the same night she had two of her girlfriends come to stay as well. One of the girlfriends brought her 4 month old daughter with her. I had lots of Granny hugs with little Willow. Bluey was happy to have a houseful of young people with good appetites and filled them up with his wonderful cooking. The girls all sat up until the early hours of the morning on the veranda, just having the best time catching up. Bluey and I thought it was just wonderful. We went from just the two of us, to having a houseful. We loved it.
    My laptop spent all of last week at the Computer Dr. It cost quite a bit to repair but a third of what it would cost to purchase a new one. I am not sure if this fits in with savings as I had to spend money to save money?
    Katie has her Birthday next week. I have made her a waterfall cardigan and was looking for something to add to this gift. When her girlfriends were here they all asked me for some of the lavender balm that I make. I made up a batch and all three girls were very happy with their little jar. This led to conversations on bubble bath, bath bombs and bath salts that I have made and how much they have enjoyed them when I made them. An idea was born from this conversation and I am now making Katie a Spa Bath pack for her Birthday. I have all the ingredients required. Lush inspired bath bombs are drying in the moulds. The jar lids have all been spray painted gold and I have a moss green basket for them all to be stored in.
    Looking forward to your craft post.
    Life is good.

    1. Dear Jane, It is so wonderful Katie will bring her friends there to enjoy themselves and that Bluey enjoyed it too and cooked for them!
      If your computer is running well now yes what a saving. Sometimes the slightly older computer is actually better than newer. I "upgraded" my lap top a couple of years ago only to find the old one had been better overall.
      Now I have seen the additional things you made for the birthday present. It all looks gorgeous. Fabulous gift. I can tell you this would have cost a fortune at the craft market!
      Have a good new week leading up to Christmas! With much love

  11. This is for the past 2 weeks:

    1. Dear Making Cents of it all, I hope you are feeling better now. Vertigo can make you feel awful. I love about the free bagels and your cooking looks beautiful!! Have a good new week! With love

  12. Annabel you had a wonderful week by the sounds of it and glad you are safe from the fires. We also have glorious rain here in abundance and our 3 large rain water tanks are filled to full and overflowing after the bushfires here. Congratulations on the new chickens they look so sweet and you are right a trailer is a real necessity in a rural area.

    We also had fires near our new farm before we moved in which were unfortunately deliberately lit. They were around 15 km from our new home we purchased and were fanned by strong winds. Fortunately there were no casualties and it mainly burned in state forest and the firefighters managed to stop it reaching populated areas.

    I will admit I haven't kept much track of frugal things we did last week but the one that stood out was saving $4350 in furniture removalist fees between the 2 companies we got quotes from and as you can imagine we went with the cheaper quote.

    We moved in on Tuesday and so far we love our new home being so much more spacious than the little workers cottage we were renting.

    So far we have set up the main bedroom,most of the lounge room, most of the kitchen, most of the 2 bathrooms apart from putting more linen in the cupboard. We are yet to unpack our grocery stockpile into the food storage rooms.

    Have a wonderful week ahead everyone :).

    Sewingcreations15 (Lorna)

    1. Dear Sewingcreations, You have moved!! Just in time for Christmas this is so nice! I know removalists charge wildly varying fees. Very good to get a few quotes. You did well on that!
      The rain is great. You have full tanks from day one!! Ours are full too, overflowing. When they over flow I want to collect that water too. Chloe runs a bath when they are overflowing and has a decent bath!
      Having space... you will love it. We have the same here. I enjoy the space and it gave us so many options. It took a while to know what areas are best for things and now we feel we have the hang of the house... one room gets the warmest as it catches the afternoon sun on the window... things like this.
      My pantry took ages to unpack... but it was so much fun to set it up. It is like a shop now!! So you will love setting up the stockpile.
      What a gaol you have achieved! You must be tired. I hope you will have a beautiful week settling in and setting up! With much love

    2. Lorna I am so happy to hear you are in your new home and enjoying it. We missed most of the latest rain event. We did get some showers but not a lot.
      Enjoy to setting up of your new home.

    3. Annabel thank you for your encouragement and beautiful Christmas card too which we picked up yesterday :).

      We are so incredibly grateful for full water tanks for the beginning of summer. The house we purchased was vacant for 18 months as the owners had rented it once and had a bad experience and then put it on the market so the rain water tanks were filling during that time too.

      Chloe and I must think alike because when we saw the rain water tanks overflowing we almost filled our over 6ft long enamel bath and luxuriated in the water and having a nice bath. We couldn't find the bubble bath :( but it was nice just as nice without it :). We still collected rain water from a downpipe that had fallen out in buckets and watering cans to water our potplants and to fill up drink water bottles with.

      This is just what we are doing is working out which rooms are best for what and how they will best function for us.

      sewingcreations15 (Lorna)

    4. Jane I will be praying for substantial rain for both yourself and Tania and any other bluebirds that are in areas that need it. It is so dry everywhere at the moment with our area still being drought declared among many others.

      Thank you for your well wishes and we thoroughly plan to enjoy every moment of owning our new home.

      sewingcreations15 (Lorna).


I really appreciate your comments thank you! The aim of my blog is the be a place of encouragement and happiness. Very rarely is anyone rude. Actually only twice so far! If you post a rude or aggressive comment I will read it but not publish it, thanks for

Spam is never published... if you are advertising a product or selling website your comment wont be published. I am inundated with stuff about drugs, horses and weird things! I am not going to publish this stuff! Thank you.