Feather your Nest Friday, 9th April, 2021.

 I am late!   I had a trip to town yesterday and did a stock up shop with many extras like buying seedlings and seeds.   It was good to have a stock up.   But by the end of the day I ran out of go.

This weeks blog star is Scout.  If you asked her who she is she would say she is a beautiful girl.  That is what I tell her 100x a day. 

It seems to have sunk in as she knows she is special!  

It was a much more normal week and I have been catching up but I am behind on replies and correspondence so please forgive me if I did not reply to you.  I really hate to not reply.

Chloe asked Mum and I to come for an Easter afternoon tea.   It was beautiful.  We arrived to the prettiest set table.

I did a little sewing most days.   If I get back to my 15 minutes a day I seem to produce a lot more than it sounds!  

Being Autumn here,  and cooling fast,  I made the little boys their first very soft hankies (handkerchiefs) that are much more gentle than tissues (Kleenex) and while I was at it I topped up the girls supplies.   They are soo so soft. 

I also made up a few more Christmas gift bags.   The stack is growing. 

I cooked up a big turkey from the freezer.  Mum gave me this bird as she had one too.  She said "don't roast it, it will be tough."   She was not kidding.  I made it into a big pot of Turkey broth and thought it would never break down.   Finally I ended up with soft turkey meat and a big quantity of stock.
I portioned this up into containers and froze some.  Then I made a big lot of baby food with the rest.   So Thomas has had Turkey and veggies all week with a supply frozen ahead.   I saw Thomas yesterday afternoon.  There was an orange spot on his cheek.  I recognised it as with so many carrots and so much pumpkin I didn't need to be a forensic scientist to know what it was!
This freed up so much space in the freezer.  Odd shaped things take up space and I plan on filling that with nicely stacked goods next week. 

I planted five rows of carrots.   They were easy as the were seeds on tape.   I have watered those everyday and they half filled one of the raised garden beds.

In the pantry I filled lots of jars which emptied heaps of packets and created room.  And looks tidier! 

We had to take a trip for Andy's check up with the surgeon.   Last trip I worked it into the day that I could go to Harper and Scarlett's school and meet them as they came out.   I got the chance to see their beautiful school.   It would constitute an answer to prayer that they go to a Christian school.    They thrive in it.   As they ran out Harper (who was once so terrible shy) shouted at the top of her lungs. "That is my Nana!!"  and every head turned! haha! 
So now I have been there twice to great them and see Lucy and Sidney for half an hour.   It was beautiful.  
Very often I think "take every opportunity" and it applies in different ways. 
One day last year my Dad turned up and he wanted me to go for a drive with him.  I just dropped everything and went for that drive.   It resulted in a couple of beautiful hours together and I know he enjoyed it so much.   I am so grateful I took the opportunity.  Other times he invited me on whole day trips and I took each of those opportunities and they were wonderful days.   I knew at the time some of these were golden days I would always remember. 

Thinking of this reminds me that I was reading about someone who was lamenting how they had wasted their life and "squandered their God given talents."   It was very confronting to read and so sad.  They knew it was too late to rectify.   It is such a huge topic.  What are my talents?  Am I glorifying God with the use of my talents?  Am I a good steward of my life and my time?!   I like the blog The Prudent Homemaker.  I even like the word Prudent.  I like the words Stewardships and Diligent!   I think of them a lot in terms of the grocery budget and so on but this made me think of them much more in terms of life in general.  The Prudent Homemaker is a great blog on making a beautiful life on a very small budget.  She shows how much is in our own hands.   This afternoon I am planting flowers, working towards a garden as pretty as Brandy's.

How did you build up your home, pantry or garden this week?  I hope opportunities came your way and you had eyes to see them and energy to make the most of them!   
It has cooled down here and is threatening to rain so I hope it does! xxx


  1. Hi Annabel

    So glad that Andy is doing well. Hope his recovery is quick for him.

    Scout sure is a beautiful girl with such a wonderful smile from ear to ear.

    What a wonderful looking setting your Dear Mum had for Easter afternoon tea. This was so pretty and I am sure you, Chloe and your Mum had a great afternoon. We did out Easter decorating and had a lovely lunch out to support a local venue that we know is doing it tough.

    The Winnie the Pooh cot quilt was gifted at Easter to our Friend's baby girl and Mum is so delighted with it, as is baby.

    Unfortunately we received news yesterday that DP's car he takes to work has been written off due to recent flooding and a detour in place when he was coming home from work he took the detour and like you hit a Kangaroo slightly (Roo was ok and got away) unlike our car that went into the river crossing that was starting to rise. Now time to look for a new car for him to be able to go safely to work. At the moment he is taking the old ute.

    DP was able to take a long weekend last weekend and this weekend. We decided to take a night away in a local resort and had such a lovely time as it was very family friendly and not over crowded.

    How lovely that you were able to pick up Scarlett and Harper from school. Such a delight for them to see you.

    Love the little "Christmas bags" you are making. DD10 and I went into sewing last week and are going again this week. DD10 is making her teacher some pretty Christmas placemats. They have been cut out and quilted and now we are attaching the binding which I will hand sew around once they are completed. I was really impressed that she choose to do something with a difference for her teacher. She is really enjoying her last year at Primary school. Yes can you believe this is her last year in Primary .... 😢

    Masks here are mandantory for just under a week till they review the situation and it has been really great to see that almost everyone is wearing one. There were a few stopped by Police in the local areas that had been unable to get them and the Police handed them one. This is the first time we have seen this happen and we have mostly been avoiding going any where but sometimes you just need to get out.

    Wishing you a very Happy Week ahead
    Take Care
    Aly xxx

    1. Dear Aly,
      Oh no flood waters are so dangerous I am sorry about the car! I am really glad your beautiful quilt was so appreciated! It would be an heirloom I know.
      How nice to have a special night away! Some of things times can be so special and memory makers.
      I am thrilled how now DD is old enough to sew with you! Her teacher will be so touched and impressed by the placemats. Sewing is such a good skill and ten is a great age. She will be very capable and with your guidance learns lots of skills. I think its so good!
      I am still keeping a basket of masks handy. I made a lot and gave away a lot. So I made some more. The same could happen here.
      What a nice week and this week is almost over too so I hope this was a good week also! With love Annabel.xxx

  2. A friend of mine jokingly started “Opposite Therapy” (pretty sure she made this concept and term up!) as a way to challenge herself to do and try different things. We all know how our personality and fears can sometimes restrict us. Well I loved this concept and I’ve been applying it to my life, and so many fun things have happened! Things I would normally find a reason not to do. As an example my hubby and I had an opportunity to go on a 4 night road trip together, normally I would find several excuses not to go, but this time I said yes! Just yes! We had a ball!! I love road trips and everything I had worried about that might happen while we were away didn’t!!

    The point of this anecdote is to say that opposite therapy is making me a better steward of my God given time on Earth. I’m not wasting opportunities because of unfounded fear.

    I’ve also had a revelation that I am wasting precious time on YouTube (I think I became quite addicted during our year of Covid) so now instead of living my life through the eyes of a screen, I’m just getting up and living it! Don’t get me wrong I still love my YouTube but I’m more sensible with it now.

    Have a lovely week Annabel.

    1. Cheryl, I really enjoyed/appreciate your post about "Opposite Therapy" :). We have an up-coming trip and this has helped me to look forward to it instead of being afraid. I've become such a hermit this past year. Gonna break outta that! Also, the YouTube limiting is such a confirmation....every now and then, I'll "hear" the Lord say, "Get up and do something.". It's so fun to accomplish something around here. But, I do still use yt to unwind before going to sleep. And, I've been learning how to cook lots of Asian noodle dishes!
      Mary in San Diego

    2. I’m so pleased my words helped you Mary. Go on and enjoy your trip. You will have a great time and be pleased you went. Then next time you catch yourself backing out of something if you notice it’s more because of anxiety or worry, stop yourself in your tracks and just say yes. It’s changing my world for the better right now.

  3. Scout is a beautiful girl! This reminded me of our old black Labrador. His name was Quail but when I stroked or cuddled him I usually called him darling. If anyone in the household said darling Quail would rush over and sit looking up at them because he knew he was the Darling!
    So glad Andy is doing well and you had a more normal week.
    Your post really resonated this week. I too like Brandy's blog. There have been some tough times emotionally over the last few years because of my late mothers mental health and I value enormously the connection to you and other bloggers and their readers whose values I share.
    I don't have any siblings but I have friends both nearby and through the web and I'm not overstating it when I say your encouragement and positivity are a force for good in my life.
    Give Scout an extra cuddle from me.

    1. Aw, what a precious doggy your Quail was!
      Mary in San Diego

    2. Dear Penny,
      That is so sweet. The goodness in these dogs amazes me.
      I am so sorry for the times you have had that must be very stressful. Penny there have been many friendships formed here. Many times these have been a kind of saviour to me too. Funnily originally when I first got a computer and discovered how to get around I found Laine's Letters. Well she was in California and I read every letter as if from a personal friend. I loved a new Laine's letters and felt encouraged, re energised and better after reading them. It seemed odd to feel she was my friend as we had never met. Now I have learned something. We can have sisters anywhere in the world and whether we write letters and have penpal friends or chat online or on the phone or in the flesh it doesn't really matter. Amazingly to me after 25 years or so Laine is my friend although we still haven't met! So really the world is a small place!
      If you ever need to talk in a way you cant publicly you are most welcome to email me, if you want my emails address let me know here. I mean that.
      Thank you for such a kind comment. That is very encouraging to me and helps me too. Much of today I have been thinking what to write about and deep in thought! Well you helped me! With love Annabel.xxx

    3. Dear Annabell, I have to write to tell you I feel exactly the same about you and your posts as you were about Lainies. I feel encouraged and learning or getting creative with what I have. As I am not really surounded by same frugal/prepper minded people I value your ideas and words. Like from a far away friend's letter, I enjoy every single post of you. Learning, loving every day and make me smile. I take heart from your words. Thank you. With love, Laura from Romania

    4. Thank you for your kind words Annabel.

  4. Hello Annabel and yes Scout knows she is beautiful indeed and we also tell our cat she is a beautiful girl at least the same amount of times and likewise she knows. What a beautiful table setting that Chloe set and the lovely teapot and cups with beautiful roses on them and the rabbits too.

    The flannel hankies are beautiful that you made and all the lovely soup and baby food. Glad you got out into the gardens and planted some more lovely carrots and topped up your pantry again.

    Funny your should mention Stewardship or being good stewards and using our talents and there is so many ways we can all do this. I have been thinking a lot lately on how to reduce expenses and buy groceries at cheaper prices where we can and think I will be able to reduce our grocery budget considerably even though our grocery budget was not high in the first place.

    Our Vicky challenge added up to $ 81.13 in savings last week :) .

    In the kitchen -
    - Cooked 2 loaves of wholemeal white bread in the bread making machine saving $6.98 over buying them locally.
    - Blanched and froze our broccoli we bought on special to make 10 meal sized portions for the freezer.
    - Cooked all meals from scratch.

    Purchases -
    - Bought 12 tins of spam on special saving $26.40 on usual prices.
    - Saved 4% or $8 by purchasing a RACQ Woolworths grocery gift card for grocery purchases.
    - On specials from Drakes supermarket we purchased on special 6.055kg of plain, bbq and honey soy marinated large chicken drumsticks for $2.90 kg, 2 x 500g of cashews for $5.95 a packet, fresh broccoli for $3.50 kg and got a 5% pensioner discount saving $35 on usual prices.
    - At Coles we purchased 15 tins of lychees in a cheaper brand saving $12.75 over buying them elsewhere.

    In the gardens -
    - Tied up our cherry tomato plants that are producing well and getting huge.
    - Started digging and loosening soil in another garden bed and will amend the soil before planting.
    - Dug and amended the soil with manure and compost in another garden bed to make it ready for planting.

    Hope everyone has a wonderful week ahead :).

    Sewingcreations15 (Lorna).

    1. Dear Lorna,
      Its really good that learning never ends. With spending less on groceries I think it can mean making it go further for the same money, making money on groceries go further so we can build up the pantry or the same to add to savings or other areas of the budget. Whatever it is I know there are more ways to discover. In fact I am on this subject as well with the animal foods. Everyone is telling me how much food for their animals is going up so I am going to try and work on a post about this.
      The prices of your chicken drumsticks was great. Especially as some have been marinated. $3 a kilo for meat is just fantastic now. That is when to stock up!
      Your work on the garden beds inspires me! I am continually working on mine and seeing improvements. I have planted up two beds now with things for winter such as broccoli. I am happy to have them refilled. Again this is all an area of continued learning!
      I am watching for good prices. I would love to do broccoli as you have as that is a veggie we continually use. If I could the surrounding towns I have three main supermarkets to choose from and follow the specials. There have been some good deals lately. Not many like there used to be but some! I am learning to get much more and deal with it when I do see a super good price.
      I hope you have a good new week too. We are needing some rain. With love Annabel.xxx

  5. Scout is such a cutie. Sounds like you had a good week. Hope Andy heals quickly and thoroughly.
    Have a blessed weekend

    1. Thank you Cheryl! Andy is doing really well. Have a very good new week to you! xxx

  6. Debby in Kansas USA10 April 2021 at 07:08

    Loved your post and the wise lesson in it. Take those opportunities when you get them. You never know how many you'll get. My mom taught me the same. It seems we rarely, if ever, regret taking them, but I can name a dozen I regret NOT taking. Love them pics of Scout. She's a beautiful girl!!

    1. Dear Debby, Thank you! We have all missed opportunities. When younger I think I didn't recognise them! It is funny as Scout herself was an opportunity. My son in law said I could have a puppy. I just said Yes! Then I got to pick her out. I wanted a girl so he got the girls out and I played with them. They were 8 weeks old and ready. I knew them since they were born. I soon was down to two. Then Scout picked me. She wouldn't leave my side. And so she came home with me and we haven't looked back! Im so glad I said yes!
      Have a very good new week! With love Annabel.xxx

  7. I'm so glad you had a better week, Annabel. And Scout is precious - look at that smile! And such a productive yet peaceful week.
    I find such peace when I read your blog and take part in the Tuesday Afternoon group. So many of the posts resonate with me, causing me to reevaluate where I spend my time online, like others have said. It's so easy to get mired down in the doom and gloom news in the world, so I'm choosing to spend less time online, choosing groups to follow that reflect my faith and desire to make my little corner of the world a little better. (The Quilting and Cats FB page is also delightful. :) )
    And I so enjoy learning more about different part of the world through pics and posts. When ladies post, I like to look to see where they're from - so many different places! Forgive my ignorance, but I do have a question re: gardening in Australia. Are you able to grow crops through your winters as many of you are still posting about planting? Here in central WI in the US, it gets to -20 to -30 sometimes, so we can't winter garden as easily.
    Hope all the Bluebirds are having a good weekend!

    1. Dear Jill,
      Thank you so much! I try and have the blog and Club go hand in hand. I have to be so careful about news and keep my mind on good, happy and productive things. Much of the news is not true anyway it is sort of social engineering I think! We dont have to be bothered with that. But I adore to see cooking, gardening and so many wonderful people taking good care of their families and helping others. This just does me good. And it helps me keep going and not be discouraged.
      I am inspired by how the ladies in different parts of the world do things! So ok... here we can grow things through winter. We do not get snow though we can get frosts. Mainly I can grow winter crops like broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts... root crops. Things very much slow down but it keeps going. We still love spring as spring and summer are still the main growing times. Late summer is our big produce time. Sometimes frost does kill things. But it isn't an always thing. I am impressed how you manage in severe cold like that. We have severe heat at times but we are just not used it it that cold. I read the long winter in the Little House series and it half scared me to death!
      Many thanks Jill. With love Annabel.xxx

  8. Hi Annabel, Scout is a beautiful girl! She looks so sweet and intelligent and so happy she's smiling. What a lovely Easter afternoon tea. The tea set is beautiful with the raised porcelain. The bunnies and chick decor is just charming. I love them. The hankies are nice. The foxes are adorable.
    How wonderful you were able to meet Harper and Scarlett at school and see where they go and then have a chance to visit with Lucy and Sidney.
    I'm not familiar with that blog and will have to check it out. Have a lovely week.
    Blessing, Laura

    1. Dear Laura,
      You will like A Prudent Homemaker I think. She has beautiful photos and each week she is very inventive and inspiring.
      I was so happy to see and get to know the girls school. And I met Scarletts teacher. She used to be Harpers teacher too. Just so lovely. Truly an answer to prayer!
      I hope you have a very good new week! With love Annabel.xxx

  9. I was thinking all might not be well again when you were late posting. I was glad to read things are going better. We are getting a beagle puppy end of May or so. She was born April 3rd. Still miss Coco at times but this one will keep us busy. I planted 32 carrots in my raised bed today! Not nearly as many as you! Nancy.

    1. Dear Nancy,
      Yes it was just a case of being too tired! I love to do my posts as I need the review! Oh how exciting about your puppy! This is a lot to look forward to. Nancy animals are a huge benefit. I dont have to tell you as obviously you know that through your Coco.
      I planted carrots too! I have not been good at carrots before so I am trying again. I hope we both get good harvests! With love Annabel.xxx

  10. I just love your animal photos, Scout could be a supermodel ;). That is what I tell our mini schnauzer, she is a super model (long on looks, short on brains). :)

    1. Haha! That is a cute type of dog you have! Often I say Scout needs a job as others like her are working dogs but I didn't think of supermodel! xxx

  11. Scout is beautiful! We have a cat and a new kitten, and although the kitten is probably doing what other kittens everywhere do, we think her totally entertaining and so unique. What a gift she is to us! I, too, am a "thrifter." It was one way the Lord showed me, many years ago, that He would provide for us. Now it is more like a hobby, and so much fun. I find it a treasure hunt. This week I found what appears to be a brand new LLBean robe, in my size, for fifty cents. I had needed a robe. And, before I went, I specifically asked the Lord for some little tins for hand sewing supplies. I think I ended up with five, all for just over a dollar. Shopping with Jesus is so much fun! He delights in it.
    Thanks for sharing your life with me. I look forward to your posts, though do not comment, until this one. Still, I appreciate them. May the Lord bless you.

    1. Thank you very much for commenting I do appreciate it. Oh how nice to have a new kitten! I am just hopeless when it comes to baby animals I would adopt them all.
      I also find thrift shopping exciting like a treasure hunt! That is part of the fun of it! Also I am amazed how our needs turn up. I love to hear about your finds and how you found exactly what you needed! This is beautiful. God does delight in our happiness and I have to remember to always pray before shopping, whether thrift store of any kind of shopping.
      Thank you for such a kind comment! With love Annabel.xxx

  12. Yes, Scout is a beautiful girl💖 I'm so glad you tell her that and love her so much. You can see the happiness in her sweet face. With Andy recuperating at home plus your usual whirlwind of accomplishing, nobody would call you "late" on your blog posting. Please stay well yourself.
    I checked out Brandy's blog and wow! It's beautiful.
    Ya know, I used to tell my kitty, Ursula, "ur so pretty" so often, that that's how she got her name :)
    Love, Mary in SD

    1. Dear Mary,
      Thank you! I know you are such an animal lover. Brandys blog is visually beautiful and extra lovely if you love gardens as I do.
      I think gardens and animals bring so much joy. I hope you had a good week! With love Annabel.xxx

  13. Annabel Scout is a beautiful girl. She really is growing up so much. Getting to be there to pick up the little girls from school would be an absolute delight. At least everyone knows who you are and wont question what you're doing there.
    I have been adding more beds and pots to my garden. A couple of weeks ago we picked up a lemon and a lemonade tree from Aldi. These have gone into large pots in the garden. Around the base there is lettuce in one and bak choy in the other. Whilst the tree is so young there is plenty of space in these large pots to grow a little extra.
    I cleaned up my seed planting area and got all the seed trays ready. Seeds have been sown and beds are being readied. By the time the seeds have grown up enough, the beds will be ready to plant out with the new seedlings.
    Passionfruit and more Rosella have been picked. The Passionfruit is being made up into cordial and passionfruit butter(curd). The Rosella will be made up into syrup. This is so delicious over icecream or plain yoghurt.
    Enjoy your week. Life is good.

    1. Dear Jane,
      True. I would be a failure as someone trying to sneak into the school!
      I am loving g your work in the garden. Over the last couple of years I have seen you extend it a lot, add the chickens, the better coop and now more! It is all paying off. You put it all to extremely good use. I had a fantastic day today as far as the garden goes!! And we had a little bit of rain this week. This week has gone fast so here we are ... Thursday!
      I hope it was a good week for you. With much love, Annabel,.xxx

  14. Annabel,
    Thank you for another wonderful post and the great photo of Scout. I too have been working on being better at taking those opportunities when they present themselves. Yesterday, even though I didn't feel that well I agreed to take a day trip to the beach with my husband. It turned our to be a wonderful day and so happy I agreed to go. One never knows what tomorrow may bring so we need to make the most of each day. Your wonderful blog is a blessing to me especially during these troubled times. Thank You!!

    Kim-Pacific Northwest, United States

    1. Dear Kim,
      Your beach trip sounds beautiful. I am glad you took that opportunity! Thank you for such a kind comment to me. I hope your week has been great as it has flown by! With much love, Annabel.xxx

  15. Aw, that Scout! I bet she has lifted your spirits more than once with that beautiful smile. We only have a cat right now but he makes us happy. I am thinking seriously about a dog. I think that is a big decision. Annabel, your daughter did an outstanding job with the Easter tea. Everything was lovely. What wonderful memories you are making with your family.

    I have meant to contribute sooner but there is an on-going battle here with fire ants and web worms! They both are trying their best to destroy my gardens. One is coming up from the ground and the other is floating down from the trees on their little webs! I refuse to use any kind of poison that is detrimental to our bees so I just "gird my loins" and fight on! Stay tuned for the outcome.

    I managed to dehydrate more veggies this week and I have apple scraps in a jar making vinegar. I bought 4 oranges and saved the peels to make candied orange peel, being determined to use up everything and throw nothing out. That's another reason to have chickens. If there is something in the food department you just can't do anything with, the chickens will clean it up in no time. Saves on the feed bill, too. Today, I cleaned out the big freezer and used all the saved odds and ends to make a big pot of killer soup. All I added was some fresh cabbage and a potato.
    I'm hoping for a rain this week so I can stay inside and do some sewing. I have several projects I can't wait to start on. I agree with Jane: Life is good!

    1. Dear Pam,
      Seriously Scout always does cheer me up. If you could get a dog that gets on with the cat you would be ok. It is a big decision. You might get an opportunity and you'll know!
      Oh no about the ants and worms! Something with our weather and we have been inundated with tiny snails! So we too are battling!
      I dont know much about the ants. Actually I dont know anything about Web worms! But I do understand about not using poisons as neither do I. Boiling water is my go to ant nests thing if Im really having a problem. With the snails Im thinking Im going to have to pick snails off one by one.
      I love that there is no waste with chickens! They love all the random scraps. Good for them too. I hope you got to do some sewing. We had a bit of rain and I sewed those days. As we get into cooler weather I will have less work to do outside and more time in the sewing room... we think alike! With much love Annabel.xxx


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