The little birds...

If you watch little birds you will see they are busy and happy! Using whatever they can find they create the most gorgeous little nest.
I would be the little bird with some glittery thread in her nest!
We can be like this. Happily working away with the things that are available to us to create a beautiful and happy home.
All the while with a little song in our heart.

Banner by Free Pretty Things for You.

Thursday 26 September 2019

Feather your Nest Friday, 27th September, 2019.

Last week seems like a long time ago!  I am glad to take a moment to look back and breathe!
It seems such a long time ago that I arrived home with little Georgie and Eddie. Now it seems like they have lived here forever.  Both are doing so well and so lovely.  Georgie drinks his bottle up well and has grown.  They all play together and run around as if they have a racing track worked out.

This is Eddie and Loui.

This is little Georgie.

I love them all!  

Some of the ways I saved, got ahead, added to the pantry etc. included:

I had left over roast lamb and also roast chicken.  Normally if I do a roast lamb I cook enough veggies and make enough gravy that I serve up roast lamb x 2.  One lot goes into an oven poof dish sand I usually skip a night and heat that up and have a roast meal again.  I love this night off!   And roast meat will be lunches too.  Still I had left overs!  So I stood and made up a dozen very large rolls.  These go into the freezer for Andy's lunches when needed.  They are thawed/microwaved or go into the sandwich press.  He loves them.  I stick to roast meat and butter with pepper or maybe cheese or mustard as these all freeze just perfectly.    There are always fast lunches to grab and take anywhere.

I did some more burning and cleaning up and had a huge bonfire.  We still have several to go!

I cut Andy's hair.

Mum gave us a big bag of almonds!  They will be soo useful for making pesto when my basil grows.

I cooked up a lot of spaghetti meat sauce then made up pasta bakes and containers of meat sauce.  Some for the freezer, some for meals, some for Lucy's family, some for Allie who has done several lovely things for me lately.

With so many eggs I was able to give eggs to everyone and make up several dozen individual bacon and egg pies.   

For the girls I made little banana cakes.   Yesterday Mum and I headed off, both with cooking, to see the girls.  They will not starve, this I know for sure!

In the op shops I got some very good books, a lovely piece of floral flannelette, leather belts to make animal collars and some bottles.

Our supermarket is giving free seeds with purchases and I have a line up of them sprouting on my windowsill to add to the garden.

We had beautiful rain here.  We are very blessed it is green as much of Australia is in the most severe drought.

A major bit of progress was having help and some fence posts put in so we will have an additional little animal yard.  

On the side of our driveway is a kind of comer of trees and pasture.  I thought if it was fenced  off then I could keep calves, lambs (or whatever!) in it and they could not get into my garden.  So now we have posts and just need wire!

Most of my crafts I share over in the club The Tuesday Afternoon Club. There are almost 700 of us now!   One of the things I make this week was pretty essential oil hand soaps for my gift cupboard.  I found the lovely bottles for $2 each.

They smell lovely and they will pair well with the hand towels I have already finished, bars of soap I made and wash cloths I made.

Well that was my week!  Today I need to get a few things done as tomorrow Andy's team is in the AFL grand final so not much work will happen!

How did you get ahead, build up your savings and pantry and generally feather your nest?  I hope it was a good week for you.  Many things come in the form of little opportunities.  If our eyes are open we can see them.  Just being in good health and feeling good is an opportunity.  I had a few days this week I didn't feel well.   When this happens you realise what an opportunity feeling fit and well actually is! Also how important it is to look after our health.  Being able to look after our families and help others depends on our energy and health!  

Have a wonderful weekend. I am working on a Nanna Post.  I have two almost done.  One is How to beat rising prices like Nanna did and make meat go further.  The other is How to beat rising prices like Nanna did using basic skills.    Hopefully they will be finished soon! xxx


  1. Hi Annabelle, You are sure a busy little farmer. Wonderful all the baking and sharing you do with everyone and waste nothing. Sorry you were ill for a few days. Still dealing with chronic fatigue but over the Sepsis. Praise the Lord! Looking forward to your Nana posts.

  2. Hi Annabel and you have got so much accomplished and sorry to hear you were sick and hope you are feeling better and more energised.

    Got busy last week and didn't comment so the new baby calf and goat are adorable :). Your baking looks divine and love the hand soaps with such pretty bottles.

    Just a brief catch up of last weeks going on's here is that I found chicken drumsticks on special for $3 kg at IGA and topped up with 11.71 kg so the chicken freezer drawer is full. I painted the wall, side of the kitchen unit with sink, and ply we had filled in the hole with as the vinyl on boarding was higher around the outside costing happily nothing to do apart from a bit of time and effort.

    This week's Vicky challenge added up to $860.26 in savings -

    Listings/Finances/Purchases -
    - Listed 12 items on a free listing and reduced final auction value free promotion on eBay saving $19.80 on usual prices.
    - Got 2 quotes to do some electrical work done one came in at $1300 and the other $602.66 to do the same thing so of course we went for option B saving a whopping $697.34. They will be out here doing the work not this coming week but early the following week. So hard to get quotes when you live rurally it seems.
    - Put an additional bulk sum of money into savings as we are trying to get our emergency kitty up to a 3 month level for additional piece of mind.
    - We are currently almost doubling paying off our home mortgage repayments since the beginning of the year.
    - On clearance sale in Target I purchased a skirt and a pair of shorts for $6 in total new saving $54 on usual costs. They are clearing all their clothing to make way for more high end clothing from what I read in news articles.

    In the kitchen -
    - Made a homemade batch of chocolate fudge (including condensed milk), a quadruple batch of chocolate pudding (similar to yogo) and a double batch of Anzac biscuits saving $89.12 over buying them in the shops including what it cost us to make them taken off.

    In the gardens -
    - In two separate garden beds we planted sprouted seed potatoes from some we hadn't eaten from the supermarket and in another garden bed planted turnip and carrot seeds.
    - Last night we had 6.5 mm of rain plus more in the afternoon which topped up our two header rainwater tanks and overflowed into our lower 5000 gallon one filling it by another third. We have more rain predicted for this afternoon and tonight so we are hoping it totally fills our bottom tank back up.
    - DH has been working gradually during the week at the back of the property to cut up fallen branches from ironbark trees. Yesterday we filled so far 2 large wheelbarrows full and stacked them in the firewood leanto shed. This should give us ample kindling and more medium sized logs but there are still yet more to cut. Got to love not leaving your property to cut firewood.

    Hope everyone has had a wonderful week and will this coming week too :).

    Sewingcreations15 (Lorna).

    1. Dear Lorna,
      I am so thrilled you had some rain. I know of all things this is the greatest help. Some days rain has thwarted my plans and then I think of the benefits. More than any days work I could do!
      Lucy has started making Harper chocolate custard the old fashioned way. It has a full egg per serve. And just like that Harper is having lots of farm eggs. So this is a lot of goodness actually.
      I did miss you last week. I resolved that if I didnt hear from you this week I would email! Anyway I am glad everything is ok! A few things ran through my mind including fires. So I was praying.
      What a testimony to getting quotes! I am amazed by this. I always like to get several quotes. I do the same with any suggested medical diagnosis/procedures or dental. This has resulted in some mind blowing differences in both opinions and prices! We just must do this!
      I think what you are doing with the emergency kitty is very good. I hope everyone reading takes notice. Sometimes to do these things we do have to give up something ... it might be a holiday... it might be a big purchase or a whole lot of small things. But really the security is totally worth it.
      I hope the rain continues! This is so good! Not just the tanks but for the garden also. And those poor Kangaroos.
      If you have not heard of this and you are building raised garden beds please look at Self sufficient me... Hugelkultur method. It sounds like a mouthful. BUT if you dont know of this already... I didnt but you may well already know... it is AMAZING. And a huge cost saver with making raised garden beds. I found this so interesting and I never thought of it but it is logical!
      It is great about your inkling supplies! We stack firewood whenever possible.
      What a good week for you both! With much love

    2. Thank you Annabel for your prayers and secretly I needed them as I had a bit of a mishap last week but am fine now :).

      It certainly does pay to get many quotes for work that needs doing as they vary so wildly in price I have found and it saves a lot of money :).

      Hope you have a wonderful week this week too :).

      Sewingcreations15 (Lorna).

    3. sewingcreations15, Oh Lorna, "a bit of a mishap?"
      I hope all is k and you are back on deck and fit and well again.
      Love Lorraine

  3. Dear Annabel,

    I love coming here to see what adventures are had and what cooking delights are on show. Love all the cuteness of baby animals (or any animals), they are so much like us, needing loving tender attention and they will pay it back tenfold!

    Much love to you for the coming week and go GWS!

    Tania xxx

    1. Dear Tania,
      The animals bless me everyday. God is good. Each has come my way with out me looking. Wait until you hear what happened next! With love

  4. Like you I find I have a lot of leftovers from a roast meal. Earlier this week I cooked a chook I cut in half. Two melas and leftovers. Theother half is in the freezers. I have several of those little seed pots now and I wonder about planting them with our hot Queensland summer to come? Ham trying to just top up when I shop as we have so much food in the house. I make an exception with water. We have many therapists through the house for mum. I like to be able to off them water or another drink. I. thought I had made enough strawberry jam for the year but we are down to three bottles already. I guess I will be making more very soon.

    1. Dear Suzan,
      My seedlings are in the window and I think in another week or so they will go into the garden. Then I think by summer they will cope as long as well watered. I have some spider areas too as last year the full sun burned things. So I am hopeful! I always offer anyone coming though the house water, coffee, tea... some like to refill their own bottles with our rainwater. But I always offer. Strawberries are cheap here now so I might make some jam too. With love

  5. Replies
    1. Hello Lorraine!!
      I’m not certain ..... you might be of Vegemite scroll fame?!
      Anyway, you’re reading loud & clear!
      Ha ha!!

    2. That worked Lorraine! xxx

  6. Dear Annabel,
    I will be going for GWS in the grand final tomorrow, as they are one of our Sydney NSW teams, good luck Andy with your team.
    I am doing more every day but still a long way to go with recovery probably another 12 months before fully right.
    DH has been building/constructing a new table for multiple uses as when cutting meat, using the mincer, Fowlers
    vacola ect, it is on wheels, and the frame is steel and the top and the shelf are from pine that he milled. He is now building a large setoff shelves, also on wheels so that they are both able to be moved as needed. The shelves will be on the roller door as this was put in so that we could bring our butchered meat into the coolroom, so the shelves will be able to be moved if necessary. These shelves will hold at table height the meat mincer, meat slicer, my fowlers vacola, etc, plus lots of other storage.
    Hope you are feeling a lot better.
    Nice to "see" you Sewingcreations15
    Love Lorraine

    1. Dear Lorraine,
      Don't push too hard and over do things this can be a set back. I had a surgery once the surgeon told me a year to fully recover. And she was right. But the first two months were the hardest.
      On the farm we are also doing the same with a stainless steele counter tip and Lukes Dad was a butcher so he contributed a mincer and a saw and we have a coolroom to share with our families! We figure this is all a very good investment. Sp we are very much on the same track! With much love

    2. Dear Annabel, Thank you for your lovely words, I know that it will be at least 12 months before I am fully recovered, but I am doing what I can, when I can, and making sure that I rest.
      Isn't it great to be able to butcher our own meat, we know what it has eaten and how well we have reared them with love, as all farmers do.
      We only have 2 of our children here and we help both of them a lot, if the other 4 and their families were here instead of WA and QLd they would all receive the same.
      Love Lorraine xxx

  7. I think you have done a beautiful of providing for your family. You keep so busy.
    I love seeing your 'farm'. Those babies are just so cute!

    1. Thank you very much Cheryl! The farm is surely developing into a real farm complete with every animal! I hope your week is going well. I am late reply as have had to go to the city! With love

  8. No building a pantry this month. Instead we are eating from the pantry. Hubby retire at the beginning of August and Social Security doesn’t start until next month. Profoundly grateful the Lord prompted me to build a deep pantry a couple years ago. And then prompted me to buy Wal-mart and grocery store gift cards as well. So far I have had to spend virtually nothing at the grocery store and without the least whimper at that. God is so good at dir3cting His children if they will just listen!

    1. What a wonderful story! We may not have money, but we have food! And the gift card pantry!!
      Appreciating your talent,

    2. Hi Rachel, great to see you here again, love yourcomments

    3. Well done! Very wise. I hope as you settle into retirement and SS comes though you will be able to build the pantry back up.I am sure you will! And congratulations. I agree... it we listen to directions and act we will be ok! xxx

  9. I am sorry to hear that you did not feel well this week. We have our ups and downs here and I am so glad for my oils! Your babies are so sweet and I just adore Eddie. I am imagining how blessed your girls are to have you visit with all the wonderful foods you made. Our weekends are all scheduled around our football team here, too. Tomorrow is an afternoon game so everything will come to a complete stop at 3:30 but we love it!

    We bought seconds of apples for $6 a bushel on Monday. They are a bit green and tart so we are letting them mellow and ripen a bit before we get to work on applesauce and such. We spent a day in the North Carolina mountains with our son and his family. Our DIL family owns a wonderful old house there and we are always happy to be invited to visit when they are there. You know how those grandchildren are like Nana magnets!

    My elderly Mom and I have been ordering groceries to be delivered to her and Dad. We get on the hone and she tells me what she wants at Aldi and I place the order. This does cost about 10% more but it is real peace of mind to know that my parents have food in the house and my Mom has not tried to manage it on her own since she cannot carry them into the house anymore. I love that technology allows us to do this even though there are 500 miles between us.

    It is still hot, hot here and we have not had rain in weeks. I finally decided to try growing some fall lettuce even though it could get too cold before it is ready to eat. I had the seeds here so it cost nothing to try. They have come up and are looking good as long as we keep watering them.

    Have a lovely weekend!

    1. Dear Lana,
      Eddie sure has personality. Now he has learned to climb trees. He is always up to something!
      The football game was great and we enjoyed it so much. That is it for our season now for about six months.
      How lovely to go to North Carolina. A place to get together with family is beautiful.
      The online ordering and delivery is a great service. It is good you can assist your Mum with that. Very handy. It does eliminate so much work and stress.
      And yes! With a distance in between you can still help get it done! Love that!
      I hope your lettuce makes it! And I hope you get rain!
      I have had a trip to the city. It has been an eventful week! A lot to report this Friday! I hope a good week for you! Love

  10. Would you share the recipe for the hand soaps?

    1. Dear Gigi, All the soaps are easy and lovely use. I have a big tray of them harding now. This is the post about the soaps and it has links to each recipe I tried. Good luck! With love

  11. Dear Annabel, you have had a great week as always. I'm loving all you animals, they are all cute especially Eddie.
    Its good that you are getting rain , we had a fair bit last week and the grass is now green. I am growing the seeds from woolies too and think it is great to see the kids at the checkout waiting to see what they get. I just hope they grow them and eat them,
    I saved a bit this week with specials and bargains, I cut and coloured my hair and also cut Glenn's hair. I did my nails.
    Enjoy the day watching the footy and I'll say go GWS :)

    1. Dear Debby, Thank you! Eddie has learned to climb trees so this is getting interesting! Haha! My Woolworth seeds are doing well! I love it! Mum has been giving me hers so it will be a lot to add to the garden!
      Doing your hair and nails amounts to a huge saving. When I worked out what it saved me a year I nearly fainted!
      Richmond was Andys team so you can imagine...! With love

  12. Dear Annabel & Bluebirds!!

    The chooks are happy, so I am happy!!

    WE HAD RAIN!! I am looking forward to more!! Also, all of my mountainous Queensland peonies are up!

    Grateful for one day at a time,

    1. Dear Rachel,
      Oh wow! I saw some places got four inches.... I am so glad you got some I hope you got more since you wrote this! How wonderful!
      Please please please take photos of the peonies! All stages!
      With love,

  13. Dear Annabel, How your little farm grows and grows!

    I feel I've done little for my home of late. I stripped summer bedding from the guest room bed and washed and hung on the line. I'm just keeping up with housework and meals otherwise and spending lots of time running about in my car doing necessary errands and such. I know this is a season and shall soon end, just like our excessive heat which has been running 100F or so for two or three weeks now. I can't believe we've reached end of September (very nearly) with temperatures that high though it's typically quite warm this time of year just not HOT usually. The trees outside my windows have changed color and dropped their leaves. That's early for them. I shall miss that shade on the house with hot days continuing to hit us. I look forward to weather that is cool enough to bake and roast and get out and garden in!

    1. Dear Terri, You are right! Wait until you see THIS Fridays post!
      It is hard in the heat. I hope it has cooled down now which must be overdue. Terri I adore Autumn and like you the baking that comes with it. We are just going into the warm weather and I am already wishing it was over!
      I hope the week is going well. Sorry for slow reply... have had a city trip! With much love,

  14. Soaps are perfect for a cabinet because doesn't everyone always need more soap! and especially one that is kind to busy hands.

    1. Thank you Ruth! I really like to give useful of helpful gifts but they can still be pretty and a bit special. I have chunky natural soaps for the boys. xxx

  15. I love your Friday postings! Have you written the recipe for your liquid hand soap somewhere here? I'd like to copy for Christmas gifts but I can't find your recipe anywhere. Did you buy your jars at one of the $2 type shops? So many questions! Thank you Annabel.

    1. Dear Valerie, Thank you so much! With this soap I cheated and used a bulk buy on special nice hand soap... then I added some complimentary floral essential oils to it. I do have a hand made from scratch hand soap recipe though that I am about to test run. I will post that soon. The containers came from a markdown in Target. I thought they were so pretty I grabbed them. I have seen similar in cheap shops and even IKEA, Kmart etc but not as pretty. However with a plainer container you could use a very pretty label and that could still look just lovely. I hope that helps! With love

  16. Dear Annabel, Thankyou for sharing the Tuesday club photo of your Hand soaps - they look wonderful. The photos of your animals are so beautiful. It was a busy happy week in our household with visitors galore. My pantry stockpiles came to the rescue a few times. 3 little people forgot their toothbrushes which didn't matter as I had spares on hand etc. Have a great new week, I am excited to hear two more Nana posts are close by. Love Clare

    1. Dear Clare,
      Thank you! You have done so well catering for visitors even down to toothbrushes on hand! It is so nice to be prepared and not have to stress. Your cooking is very good too Clare. I am nearly finished the saving on meat post. It has been a busy week with a trip to the city which slowed me down! I hope your week is going well! With love,

  17. How did you get ahead, build up your savings and pantry and generally feather your nest?
    Today we will do a "big shop" in the city. They have sales on some of the items I like to keep in our pantry for the winter: Tomato products, salad dressing for Farmer, canned veg, coffee for my office (we take turns buying it), and baked goods for Farmer. We have plenty of other foodstuffs.
    I'm also starting to watch for Christmas gifts for the grandchildren. I already purchased their clothing items and have the big girls' books in my Amazon cart.
    We try to give "Something to wear, something to read, something they want and something they need." With 8 grands, 4 gifts each is alot. I plan early.

    1. Dear Key,
      Well done on your big shop! This is what I do! Except you are going into winter and we are not. To have basics on hand is so wise. Like the tomatoes products... so much you can do with those.
      I like your plan for the Christmas presents. It is beautiful you have eight Grandchildren! And how they would love Christmas! Planning early is the key! I start in January! I make a lot, buy bargains all year as well... and now I have a fair bit. But I need to go through my gift cupboard and have a review! I hope you have a lovely weekend! With love

  18. Dear Annabel,
    Thank you for the lovely post! Your four-legged babies are so cute and growing so much! I hope you are feeling better, too.
    We were invited to our friends' lovely home in the cool mountains for a few days. We enjoyed visiting and sharing meals with them, One day, we went on a beautiful picnic to a canyon by a river. In the evenings we were able to hear elk bugling as the males declared which herd of females belonged to them.
    Our weather has started cooling a bit. We finally had a really good, soaking rain. It has been a long, hot, dry summer...unusually so even for this part of Arizona.
    Some of the ways we've saved: Took several things from the pantry to eat on our trip. Got gas for $1.00 off a gallon to fill our car, truck and daughter's car. Participating in a medical study providing extra cash, a small cooler, freezer cold packs for the cooler, and a digital thermometer. Using materials I have on hand, many of which were given to me, and a couple free 8X10 photos, to continue working on photo albums.
    Wishing you a lovely week!
    Elaine from Arizona

    1. Dear Elaine, Sorry I am slow to reply. I had a trip to the city and now I am catching up!
      How nice to have a few days away! It sounds beautiful! Also wonderful to hear the Elk!
      The medical study is a very interesting way to make some money plus the items you got! Good work on the photo albums and the free enlargements. Photos are precious. I really strongly believe in having hard copies!
      I hope the new week was also good for you! With much love,

  19. Dear Annabel,
    You had such a productive week despite not feeling well for a few days. I absolutely love your hand soaps. I would definitely take advantage of those free seeds with purchases at the grocery store too!
    I know I am late but wanted to report in. Last week I tried twice but my comment was eaten by the internet.
    Colton has started his college classes on campus this semester. As it is in the same city where he works an hour away, he stays the night at a friend's house on days he has class and work back to back. It means he is not home much lately but it is saving a ton on gas. More of his savings include changing the oil in one of our vehicles himself and repairing his cell phone that wouldn't charge. A quick Google revealed that the port had simply filled with pocket lint and he was able to get it out. We were so relieved not to have to purchase a new phone.
    I got quite a bit of crafting done. I finished sewing a quiet book for a little boy's birthday party that John was invited to. It was a huge hit and I've already had a request to make another one. I also filled an etsy order for a customer who wanted a larger quantity of some tags in my shop.
    I listed some items online to sell, cut up old t-shirts into rags, avoided impulse purchases at the thrift store, and stocked up on cheese for $2/lb for the freezer. I also gave my dishwasher a good clean and it is working much better.
    I baked lots of cookies for the farmer's market and sold most of them, along with homemade jam and fresh eggs.
    We are making good progress on our savings goals and I am excited for the month of October!
    Love, Kelsey

    1. Dear Kelsey, Thank you for trying again! I am sorry to take ages to get back to you too. I had a city trip and now I am catching up!
      It is impressive Colton is furthering his education! And sensible with the long distance to stay over night. Well done on the phone repair. This same thing happened with my iPad! I had to clean out the connection and it worked!
      The quiet book was wonderful. So much work went into that beautiful gift so I am glad it was appreciated!
      You are doing so well and got so much done! It is lovely to hear you are reaching your savings goals. Now I hope October has started well for you! With much love,


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