Feather your Nest Friday, 18 June, 2021.

We had a week of cleaning up after the storm and lots more rain.   We never complain about rain so we worked inside on those days and outside on clear days.  

I was busy, busy, busy but I still had time to notice that many of the banks here had their online banking go down.  Every week it has been something.   Being prepared means we need to think about these things. And thousands of Australians were told their power will be restored SOMETIME MID JULY.    Ok, when we have had power outages we usually get a message to tell us when it is expected to be back on and this is usually some time later in the day.  Hours rather than days.  We have lived through many blackouts.  I imagined getting the message "some time mid next month."     My friend in California regularly has no power for a day or two.  Usually in the hottest weather.   This seems to be spreading.  Could have something to do with knocking down power stations as they have done here.   It is hard to think about but we need to have a plan.   A very good plan.... 

Now for my week.  I had many opportunities come my way! 

I was getting started cooking dinner on Sunday night when my brother rang.  He asked would I like a calf?  Yes!  I turned the stove off at that point.   We agreed to both leave home and meet in the middle.   This meant about a twenty minute drive.  It was already dark.  I grabbed a blanket,  a big bright torch (flashlight), a collar and a lead.  Off we went.   We never saw another car so the one car we did see we figured was my brother and we pulled over to the road side.  It was pitch dark.  You have to remember this is farmland there are no street lights!   The torch gave me light to see the calf.  He was so little but bright eyed.   Somehow he had lost his Mum.   My brother lifted him into the back of my car.   

Once home I quickly made him a bottle.  So thankful right then for my animal pantry.  Because of this I had formula,  teats, bottles and all I needed.  He drank his bottle as though he already knew what to do.  I have named him Teddy.   He already comes to me when he is called.   He bounds around like a deer and is lovely.   This photo was day one so he has filled out quite a bit as today is day five.   He has 2 litres of milk in the morning and 2 in the evening. 

Im so happy to have the first baby of the season.

So the week was off to a good start! 

I baked scones and friands and took some of each to Mums.

Mum had saved her veggie scraps for my chickens.

I made several pizzas using cherry tomatoes Wendy gave me and then I dehydrated the rest.  This got me two nice jars of dehydrated tomatoes.

I plan on using some of these in some impossible pies.  It's good to preserve some for later.  Thanks Wendy! 

In my travels around the old farm houses I had noticed a lot of bulbs.   Some of these houses will never be lived in again.   I went with my spade and some boxes to dig some up and transplant them to my garden.  
I think I probably know what these are but I guess I could get a surprise when they flower!  If anyone knows what these are please chime in!

These were really hard to dig up.  I broke my spade handle.  Lucky I had my spare spade in the car!   Eventually I got them all up in a big clump.   I re planted them right away.  I expected the next morning maybe they would look like wilted lettuce and not be successful.  But so far they look just fine!  I will be so excited if these flower.

Then these...  and there are many more I could go dig up.   I am starting to run out of room though.
I think these are Agapanthus maybe but again not sure...

So many free garden additions. 

In the stores I found great deals on shampoo, conditioner and vitamins and stocked up those areas.

At the post office they had so many beautiful books marked down.   Many that had been $35+. were $5 and $2.   I stood and went through them and the lady I always chat to asked what kind I was looking for as she had heaps more to mark down.  I showed her some examples and she came back with a selection.  There were beautiful kids books and cookbooks and more.  I came away with a pile of them with different people in mind.   Into my gift cupboard they went! 

Speaking of the gift cupboard.  Chloe needed a gift and had no time to go to the store.  She detailed the kind of gift she needed and I had something just perfect.  She was amazed.  I told her this gift was $5 and again she was amazed!   This is the power of a good gift cupboard! 

I was given a big bag of kids clothes.  All were new with tags.   But many were dirty none the less.   Once I started to go through them I realised what I had.   After washing everything and donating things I did not think I could use I ended up with 75 items!    I sorted them into sizes from 00000 to 7.   Mostly there were three of this and three of that.  The plain small things I am keeping out to embroider.   I had just been thinking of doing some embroidery to put away for future babies.   

Then there are bigger things that will fit the girls in summer and the boys soon.   

I thought with the t shirts I could make pyjama bottoms in cotton prints and coordinate with a t shirt for the top.  I even have plenty of cottons suitable for this.   So summer pjs will be coming up.

It took me a full day to wash it all and sort things into sizes but they are in my chest of drawers that hold things for the Grandkids.     Just so wonderful to get all of this.    I hope to have some embroidered items completed soon.

I added some more hankies to my gift collection...

And five more bibs for the baby boys. 

The store had a big special on celery.  I bought one and made some into chicken soup and dehydrated the rest. 

In the op shop I had so much luck.  I found reels of lovely ribbons and laces.   Also some beautiful pure wool yarns.    This red wool is just lovely.  

I have been wanting to learn to make shawls.  Especially to make prayer shawls.  I think this yarn would be suitable.   The idea is you pray for the person as you make the shawl.   Then when you give it to them they wrap the shawl around them as a comfort and warmth.   They receive the shawl and all that prayer.  What a gift!  

The tin... I collect lovely tins like this because if I make a fruit cake a tin makes for lovely presentation.    Also if you bake biscuits a tin can make them into a lovely gift too. 

This morning I had to go into town so last night I sat the slow cooker out and filled it with all the ingredients for chicken soup except for the actual chicken!   This morning all I had to do was press on and add the chicken to it.   Tonight that soup was so good.  Very easy and full of goodness and extra garlic.   Now the weekend will be soup and toasted sandwiches, soup and scones or cornbread. 

So that was my week!   Little things add up!  

How did you add to your pantry, build up your home and get ahead this week?
Be like the little ant.   Prepare your food in the summer as winter can come in many forms. xxx



  1. Dear Annabel - you have had another industrious week. Teddy is so very cute, what a loveable face. I have been thinking about electricity a lot too. We cannot take it for granted and a few things or skills would really make a difference. Last year I bought a Kerosene lamp at a antique store and then found a Robert Gordon lamp base at an opp shop that is really beautiful - I must track down a glass flue for it, two functioning lamps would help and I must practice lightening them. I used to almost love black outs on the farm where I grew up because Dad would light a kerosene lamp and we would sit together around the table. I have also been talking to my husband about practicing cooking some things outside. We camp a lot and my husband is very good at this but I could do with some practice. This week I went to a hardware store and purchased an inexpensive curtain rod and two rod holders - I already had two block out curtains from Bunnings used at our last house. These went up in the spare room ready for my niece 's visit this weekend. I had forgotten how much difference they make to keeping the cold out from the windows. My niece has just learned to knit so we have spent a pleasant evening knitting and crocheting and chatting. I have not seen her for two years so I am very happy she is under my roof this night. Stay well everyone, love Clare

    1. Dear Clare,
      Anyone who goes camping has some good skills I think. Although I hear of people say they went camping and had electricity! But anyway being able to cook on an outside fire is a great skill. The lamps are great and you are right it is good to practice lighting them. We have some solar torches. I keep them in the windowsills. They are awesome!
      It is so lovely your are knitting with your niece! I think she will have a beautiful time with you!
      When I was a teenager we holidayed in a farm house that had no electricity. It had a wood stove and a fireplace. We loved it. There was so much warmth and atmosphere of the fire. We played board games a lot. I sat near the fire to dry my hair. Very nice memories!
      I hope you have a really good new week. With love Annabel.xxx

  2. Teddy is so sweet! I cannot imagine being without power for so long. My Mom's hospital system was hacked and her cardiologist could not get to the results of tests she had done. The whole world has gone nuts.

    Today we are going home from two weeks away to our lake house. We have had so much lovely rest and peace. We just found out that we are expecting our eighth grandchild! God is still good in the midst of all the craziness.

    Have a good weekend!

    1. Dear Lana, Oh that is terrible about the hospital. What a worry that would be. This is not good...
      I am glad you had a beautiful time away. Rest and peace are good! Congratulations on another Grandchild on the way that is wonderful new!
      Yes God has got this we just need to hang on! With love Annabel.xxx

  3. It is always a pleasure to read your posts. That poor little ribs showing calf...he found his way to the right provider; how adorable Teddy is. What a windfall of children's clothing; they look gorgeous.
    I finally had an opportunity to thrift shop after many months at home. I found two sets of bedding (sheets and cases) for $6.50 and $4.50. They will be used as bedding but if I needed to back a quilt, the flat sheet would be more than enough to do the job and at considerably less cost than buying new fabric.
    My garden takes my time these days. Still planting and I need to water often; we are getting so little rain. There is already plenty to harvest...asparagus, chard, onions, radishes and strawberries. My raspberry canes are loaded with blossoms so very happy about that. Are we the lucky ones to be living in the country!

    1. Dear Rita, Teddy is looking a lot better. I will show how he is going again on Friday. He drinks so well.
      Good buys on the bedding! This is a great way to get such a lot of good fabric!
      Your garden sounds beautiful and productive. Sounds like you can plan a lot of recipes with raspberries! Yes we certainly are blessed to be in the country! With love Annabel.xxx

  4. On Thursday I cooked up 10 pounds of the ground beef I got on sale over Memorial Day for $1.79/pound. After it cooled, I put it into my Kitchenaid with the batter paddle to break it into a more uniform crumble. Then measured 2 cups for each ziploc freezer bag. This is a bit less than 1 pound per bag, but no one here notices that so it stretches my meat!
    Found a box of pie crust (I know I should DIY pie crust but it, like making jello successfully, is way beyond my capabilities! Many have tried to teach me their “never-fail” recipes and methods and just as many have left afterwards muttering under their breath with me no closer to success!) To use up the piecrust, I will make chicken or beef pot pie using a pint of my home-canned chicken or beef and making the sauce from scratch! Quick, easy, cheap meal for me to make and even with our college granddaughter living with us for the summer, we will still have 2 filling meals from the one pie! Plus, it’s rotating my food storage!!
    My fig tree is growing in leaps and bounds and I did some research and learned it is easy to propagate new fig trees from cuttings. I need to wait until February but I’m excited to get another one for our yard and have yet another “cash crop” whose only OOP cost was a few weeks of our time!! I already have more people on a list who want to buy more lilac starts and blackberry starts next Spring! This could be a nice little side stream of income each year!
    Yesterday I went in search of a zucchini plant or seed for my garden. Even the big box chain hardware stores were out! So I went to a little family-owned local nursery that has it’s own greenhouses on site where it grows many of their plants.
    Not only did they have my zucchini in 6 packs, but all their veg plants were half off and if you bought a flat of 12 (mix and match) punnets, it would just be a flat $10. That could be a total of 72 plants if you got the smaller ones. I bought (6) six packs and (6) 4” pots. I spent $10 for 42 plants and this morning I got them all planted in my garden! This afternoon and overnight it is due to rain so the timing is ideal! I planted 10 kale (2 different varieties), 6 capsicums, 5 zucchini and 12 bush cucumbers. I am giving one daughter a six pack of butternut squash and another one will be given a zucchini plant and 2 kale. The amount of produce for now and later that these will produce will pay for that $10 spent many times over! Other parts of the country are experiencing drought conditions and uncertainty about their crops. We are blessed to know that we will, at the very least, have a bountiful harvest of produce that is native to our area. It might mean that we will be eating “local” rather than foods that come to us from different climates. The gardening has been so therapeutic for us and brings us joy.
    Gardenpat in Ohio

    1. Dear Pat,
      The pot pies sound delicious. Also portioning out the ground beef like that is a good idea. Some of these things take a little time as we put things away but it is so worth it.
      I have fig, Quince and Mulberry tree cuttings all looking good. I also have dug up figs that have come up under the big trees. Usually they are joined on by the root system but have enough roots of their own that when cut off they keep going. I hope you end up with new trees! I heard they sell for quite a bit so in the future that is another possible project!
      The Lilacs and Blackerrys are a great income. I would adore to have Lilacs!
      Your plant deal was fantastic. Also it is great to give some to your daughters and have all your back yards producing!
      I have seen a lot about the drought and I think having your own yard very productive is very wise.
      Have a very good new week! You are always so productive! With love Annabel.xxx

  5. Hi Annabel (and everyone),

    Teddy is so precious! I love seeing him. That yarn and tin are beautiful. I've done prayer shawls and people love to receive them as gifts! It is also kind of relaxing and meditative to do. Well done on the plants for your garden, too.

    This week my husband built the base for our shed and put the panels together. He wants to add in some shelves, but I am already thrilled with it! We moved some of the gardening and lawn items out there and it has already made a big difference in organization and ease of doing things outside. I have small tomatoes on my plants now, and all the herbs and zinnias are doing well. Lemon balm, hyssop, roses, and campanula are flowering - I cannot wait for the sunflowers!

    Saturday I had a baking morning (sandwich bread, hamburger buns for the freezer, peanut butter cookies, muffins for the freezer, country ribs in the crockpot, and a big roast chicken and veggies - lots of dinners for the workweek!) To the pantry I added some canned goods and hygiene items. I moved one bookcase out of the guest bedroom and put it in our home office. Both rooms look better now and our books are much better organized. It's Father's Day in the US on Sunday, so I picked out some cards from my stash and sent them out for the dads to receive "happy mail"- my dad even remarked what a beautiful card and envelope it was. :) Buying the cards on clearance or a nice thrift find has saved us about $6 a card each time. And folks seem to love getting real mail! All the throw rugs got a good washing, too.

    We did need to get a windshield replaced; as best we can tell, a little rock on the road must have chipped it, because suddenly there was a crack starting from the top, and growing. We saved a few hundred dollars by talking to different businesses and going with a locally owned place who even came out to fix it. Looks great! And I love that the money we did spend got to stay in our community.

    I hope everyone has a good weekend.

    1. Dear Kathy,
      It sounds like the shed has taken shape now. Shelves would be a great addition. Your garden is sounding lovely.
      Your cook up sounds fantastic. You can get a lot out of a roast chicken. I like a roast as a meal it is always delicious but the cold meat left over gives so many options. To me roast meat is better than deli meat any day.
      The cards sound like such a hit. People do love something nice in the mail. It is special. And it takes time and effort which I think is appreciated.
      We have had the tiny crack in the windscreen that gradually grows! It is good to have someone who will come to you and fix it.
      All your wonderful weekend work will have set you up for a good start to the new week. With much love Annabel.xxx

  6. What a productive home! I absolutely adore the Peter Rabbit handkerchiefs ♥️

    1. Thanks so much Jes I know how much you must love Peter rabbit from your blog and your printables and projects! xxx

  7. Oh, what a cute baby! Good for you for rescuing Teddy! I hope everyone here had a wonderful week!

    Not much to report from northern Idaho, USA this week, frugal or otherwise. I spent some time every day in the garden, but I am moving at the rate of an arthritic slug, so if you looked at it last Friday, and again today, you might not even notice.

    I lost quite a few plants over the winter, including most of my foxgloves and all of my chrysanthemums. Since foxgloves seed around all over the place, I asked my friend Heather for some of her seedlings. Foxgloves are tricky to transplant because they have a taproot, but she gave me about 2X as many as I wanted in case some don't make it. Then she gave me 5 canning jars, and I didn't even ask, LOL!

    I bought about 10 perennial flower plants to fill in bare spots. By shopping around (which was my entertainment for the week) I was able to find everything I wanted in 4 inch pots, which are way cheaper than gallon cans. In another year, you won't be able to see a difference. I also moved a few plants that either weren't doing well or would look better in a new location.

    Besides planting the foxgloves and other new plants, I also repaired some drip irrigation lines, using and sometimes reusing parts I already had. On Tuesday, a clap of thunder woke me at 4:30 a.m., followed by heavy rain...which I am sure all of the plants enjoyed.

    I got my first picking of strawberries Tuesday--a little over a pound. I have June-bearers. I will be picking again this weekend and it looks like I might double the amount this time. Planning to make my mom's glazed strawberry pie. I am keeping track of my yields this year.

    1. Dear Maxine,
      I think you did far more than you thought! Very good work on repairing the irrigation! I just love Foxgloves so I hope they are successful. Also beautiful to be harvesting strawberries. I have been filling gaps in the garden too and I hope all your new additions do well. I think this spring I will have another go at Foxgloves. Last years were not good but the year before I had a fantastic display. Flowers bring a lot of joy. With love Annabel.xxx

  8. Beautiful baby calf Teddy! You are so generous with all the animals! All this love will be awarded in Heaven! Also the prayer shawl - what a good ideea. Love your findings at the op shop. Looks like small treasures for me - I don't find these beautiful things in our op shops. Because of you and all the Bluebirds my gift pantry is growing also. I am working on a blanket that will be a wedding present for nexy month. Saving money and making unique handmade presents. I am off to make another batch of strawberry jam. Take care and virtual hugs, Laura from Romania

    1. Dear Laura,
      I am so glad you have a gift pantry! Thank you for telling me that we have encouraged you in that. A handmade blanket will be a beautiful wedding gift. Gifts are an area we have a lot of say in how much money is spent. Very special gifts do not have to cost a fortune. Strawberry jam is so nice. My favourite I think. Teddy is going well! He is filling out and he thinks he is a race horse! With much love, Annabel.xxx

  9. Dear Annabel,
    I want to thank you as well as Jill, Mary, Kathy, and Patti for your sweet, kind , comforting words about my baby, Treacle. Naturally, it's been a hard week, but I've spent even more time with my other furbabies and that has helped somewhat.
    We're having some rain/storm right now and we need it, though not as badly as those in the western U.S. I have two friends out in CA as well and relatives in AR and they are in bad straits.
    Teddy is adorable, nothing like a baby animal to bring joy
    The clothing is really nice and the Peter Rabbit hankies are so sweet. Blessings, Laura

    1. Dear Laura,
      I hope you are feeling a little better. We have to rebuild after a loss if you know what I mean. Its a knock. I have been hearing how dry it is in CA. This is awful. And the heat!
      I hope you have had a much better week, With love Annabel.xxx

  10. It is so fun reading about your amazing life, Annabel :). Teddy is beyond precious and lovely. I'm so thankful you have the animal rescue pantry stocked - life for little Teddy. Glad to hear he's filled out some already. What a nurturer you are. I figure the things we love to do here on earth will be similar to what we will be doing in Heaven. Maybe we'll get to work side-by-side loving and caring for the critters.
    The red tin and wool you picked up at the Op Shop are exquisite. You wouldn't believe the coarse junk available at the ones around here.
    Your Post Offices sell books? That's amazing. Nothing like that here that I've ever seen. I did read of a lady picking out some canned food at her p.o. Maybe they've an exchange set up or something?
    We got to go into some stores yesterday without wearing masks - I felt like dancing!!
    I wonder if that first plant (that you broke your handle digging up) is an orchid? I'll bet you're right on the second one being a lily.
    Those bibs are adorable - the fabric is so perfect!! You're gonna have so much fun making jammies for the grands and the t-shirt fabric looks so soft and cozy.
    How are the sheep doing re: lambing?
    Blessings and love,

    1. Dear Mary,
      We would make a good team! If you were with me today you would have had so much fun! I got to pat the most beautiful dogs I've ever seen and play with baby goats too. Heavenly!
      Yes our post offices sell books, toys and all kinds of stuff, aside of actual postal stuff. I have found amazing deals before. Like anything it takes some time to look and go through things. I really struck gold this time.
      Hopefully my plants flower and Ill post pics. Im happy if they just survive but very excited if they flower!
      I looked in my fabric stash. I have some so very soft flannel that would be lovely PJ pants.
      We are still waiting on lambs. It is driving me crazy! I am checking twice a day!
      Have a beautiful weekend Mary. With love Annabel.xxx

    2. Mary, I'm guessing I'm the person you've read about getting the canned food. I live in a trailer park, and we have a bank of cluster mailboxes under a roof near the park entrance. This is where people will kindly leave non-perishable food and other items for other residents to have. I've left numerous things there myself and will take items I can use. This isn't our actual post office (where you buy stamps, mail packages, etc.), but just our mail station. Hope this clears up any confusion.

    3. Frances in My Corner of the Trailer Park19 June 2021 at 05:28

      Mary, I'm guessing I'm the person you've read about getting the canned food. I live in a trailer park, and we have a bank of cluster mailboxes under a roof near the park entrance. This is where people will kindly leave non-perishable food and other items for other residents to have. I've left numerous things there myself and will take items I can use. This isn't our actual post office (where you buy stamps, mail packages, etc.), but just our mail station. Hope this clears up any confusion.

    4. Hi Frances, thank you for explaining that. It is just wonderful! I have never heard of that but it is so nice!

  11. Dear Annabel,

    You have been so busy! You definitely make the most of opportunities! That was certainly a wonderful bonanza of kids' clothes!

    It has been garden, garden, garden here. And I am out of shape! :) I've been pretty whacked each night, but on the plus side, I sleep well! I am hoping to get the last of it in tomorrow. Next will be cleaning out the coop and putting the meat birds in "freezer camp". At least there will be a bit of a break from heavy duty gardening until the weeds get bigger. I'm also hoping to get to some more deck painting. I've done one section, but we have to switch gears and find a new paint, as the one we've been using for the last 10 years or so is no longer sold anywhere around us.

    We are slowly easing out of lockdown, but our province is EXTREMELY cautious, so it will take a long time, by the looks of things. At least we are able to get out to get some much needed supplies from the city, now. Looking forward to seeing some family in the near future, as we move to managing the situation not as an EMERGENCY, but simply as a communicable disease. There seems to be a lot of fear still lingering that needs to be addressed, as it currently has a stranglehold on life in our country.

    You are right, there are many things to consider in being prepared. That sounds crazy about the power outage fixes taking that long! What????????????? I hope that will not be the reality and that it will be fixed soon!

    I love the animal photos and the red yarn you found!

    I guess I'd better quit procrastinating and get out and do some more planting. Zinnias and onions today; tomatoes and swiss chard tomorrow, and then I should be done!

    Have a wonderful weekend.

    xx Jen in NS

    1. Dear Jen, From seeing photos of your garden I can imagine your work and it is a lot. You have no chance of being unfit with a garden like you have. Im so glad you have it, really its such an asset. I hope you get the deck done as that will be good to have out of the way.
      I hope you are able to see family. I know you have a long distance to travel too. But with all this days turned into weeks and weeks into months and now years. This is very hard on people.
      I am glad you could get supplies and also get so much planting done. Very productive! With love, Annabel.xxx

  12. Your new calf is so adorable. The hankies, bibs, and clothes are lovely. What a great plan to embroider some of the onsies, and sew shorts for the tees.

    We had a lovely visit with my brother and his family. Taking them to the Ark Encounter in Kentucky was the best gift we knew we could give them. I explained that the Ark visit was their Christmas gift. So I have 6 Christmas gifts down already! We will probably send them a framed photo as a reminder in December. ;)

    Since I have chickens and an abundance of eggs, I am trying a new recipe. Cured egg yolks... you can grate them over vegetables, casseroles and soups. They have a rich flavor like Parmesan cheese.
    Other ways I'm saving in the kitchen: making homemade yogurt pops for snacks; homemade kombucha (flavored with leftover fruit); and home baked breads.
    I've also been saving by mending and sewing aprons from my stash. Aprons are great gifts.
    Have a blessed week everyone!

    1. Dear Leslie,
      Im so glad you could enjoy a visit with your brother. I googled about the Ark Encounter. It sounds absolutely amazing! Thats a beautiful gift.
      You are making the most of everything with the eggs and yoghurt. I use up plain yoghurt by using it as a coating for chicken pieces. Dip/coat in yoghurt then into break crumbs and over bake. Can be chicken strips, fillets too. It is just so nice. And easy!
      Aprons are so lovely and I agree they are very nice gifts. You have been very productive!
      With love Annabel.xxx

    2. Thanks for the recipe! I'll try it. Yum!

  13. Annabel that stash of clothes is amazing! What a score! How lovely to add some embroidery to them. I think you’re the only person I know who would do a nighttime calf trade lol!

    Have you frozen impossible pies before? I was wondering about that the other day. I have lots of eggs to use so I thought it might be a good idea.

    I have had a productive week, I got stuck in to cleaning out our large wardrobe. This is one of those jobs where things get far worse before they get better! It’s a bit of a dumping ground to be honest. There’s still some work to be done but I now know what I’ve already got put away for Christmas, I have a bunch of things to sell online and I donated a big box and bag to the op shop.

    Apart from that I’ve been baking and cooking lots, 2 chocolate cakes, 2 banana cakes, lemon sour cream cake, cheese scones, brownies, pikelets, Lolly cake and caramel slice. Nobody has gone hungry this week! And lots from the fridge has been used up.

    I hope you have a lovely weekend. I love the Peter Rabbit fabric btw!

    Jen (NZ)

    1. Dear Jen,
      I have started the embroidery and it is nice to be back to doing some. I need good light though so its a day time thing only!
      Evening is back to crochet!
      Yes, you can freeze impossible pies. I find it best to freeze small or individual ones. Then just take out the serves you need but once reheated you would never know. Also at this size they are good for the lunch boxes.
      Good work on the wardrobe. Also good to know what you already have for Christmas! Hope you can sell your items online too!
      The cooking sounds beautiful. I expect its cold and the kids always sound starving when its cold! So your cooking would be keeping them happy and the lunch boxes full of good things.
      Thank you, I know several people that love Peter Rabbit that are not even kids so when I saw this I knew it would be perfect!
      I hope you have had a good week. I have a lot to report this week! With love Annabel.xxx

  14. Dear Annabel
    Teddy is gorgeous! I love to see your new additions. Hope you have a lovely weekend.
    With love,
    Heidi xx

    1. Dear Heidi, Thank you! Have a good weekend too! Love Annabel.xxx

  15. Dear Annabel,
    Teddy is just adorable. Sorry that he somehow lost his Mum but he certainly has the best home ever with you caring for him. Making summer pajamas to match the children's clothes that were gifted and also the embroidering them is such a fantastic idea. It will be fun to see what kind of flowers come from the plants you were able to dig up. My entire flower garden, which is all perenniels,with the exception of 2 rose bushes and some irises all come from friends who dug things out of their gardens and gifted us when we moved to this home and hollyhock seeds that were so graciously shared with me.

    It was somewhat of a busy week here too. The weathered cooled off a little bit so some outside work in the garden got accomplished. We trellised up the squashes which allows for more room to grow things in a smallish garden. Basil got harvested and made into pesto. I places the leftover stems in water to root to grow many more basil plants. Oregano, lavender and rosemary was harvested and dehydrated. It's the beginning of cherry season here so we went to the orchard and beought back a few quarts. Three pounds got frozen and the rest we're enjoying now. I made more of the Pioneer Woman's 5 minute granola. It's become a favorite as it's made on the stove top in 5 minutes and the kitchen doesn't get heated up because the oven is on. Father's Day and birthday cards were made and sent out. I made a huge bottle of stain remover using a recipe that has Dawn, ammonia and baking soda and water as the ingredients. I also made 2 dozen empanadas using a variety of leftovers for the filling and some English muffin bread, which is a no knead recipe that has all the nooks and crannies of English muffins These got added to the freezer pantry. I love wearing long skirts and I found a new to me patternless skirt on pinterest, which I've washed the fabric and am getting ready to make. It only requires a couple of measurements. It was so easy making the patternless 3 tiered skirts 2 years ago that I thought I might give this one a go. I also purchased some fabric medium to mix in with acrylic paints. Having some T shirts that are still very good except for a grease stain that didn't get caught in time, I'm hoping to salvage them by painting flowers over the stains. Wishing all the Bluebirds a good week ahead. Blessings, Cookie

    1. Cookie you can get the grease stains out of your t-shirts by using the stain remover recipe you have made but without the water. I use 1 litre of cloudy ammonia, 1 litre of dishwashing liquid and 8 tablespoons of bicarb (same as baking soda) and shake in a bottle. To treat the stains on the t-shirts use an old toothbrush with some of the stain remover (enough for it to foam when scrubbed) and scrub in a circular motion on both the front and back of the stain until you see most of the stain coming out and leave for 5 minutes. Then wash as usual, we wash in cold water, and you should find that the stains should come out completely.

      Let me know how you go.

      We get out chain bar oil from our work clothes from chainsawing firewood and so many other stains with pre treating with our homemade stain remover.

      Sewingcreations15 (Lorna).

    2. Dear Cookie,
      You had a very productive week. Only last summer I learned how to re grow all the basil stems! It works so easily! Best tip ever!
      Your garden is very productive and you are making most of the space you have!
      I love long skirts too! Love! I have just started to sew some so I will look for this pattern.
      Heidi on Rain Country makes fantastic tiered patchwork skirts, not sure if you have seen them but they are lovely.
      Have a beautiful weekend! With love Annabel.xxx

  16. Interesting about the prayer shawls.
    I'm not the least bit religious, but over the years I've made a lot of quilts that I've given away. When you're creating something for someone, I find i naturally think a lot about that person as I'm doing it. Maybe this is the secular version of prayer shawls???

    1. Dear Frogdancer, Yes I would say so. The love and care that goes into creating something especially for someone is an expression of love that must mean something to the person receiving it. That is a blessing still of sorts for sure. xxx

  17. Hi Annabelle, Another great post. Teddy is a beautiful calf. Would that be a black angus? My Dad raised a few black angus. I love the Peter Rabbit material you made the hankie of. Would that be made of the cotton lawn material you told us about? The bibs are so cute and what a haul on clothing for the kids! Wow. Losing electricity concerns me but I don't know quite how to prepare. We have a gas stove and fireplace but the humidity and heat in the summer without air conditioning would be hard. I am still getting hot flashes so heat and those do me in at times. I have an old fashioned lamp and need to get oil, wick and learn how to use it. We have a battery operated lantern. I want to get some corn on sale four for a dollar this week and freeze. A generator would be too expensive and hard for us at this point. We don't lose electricity very often or for very long at this point but if the grid went down we would be in a pickle with our freezers. I have been dehydrating the few strawberries I get from my bed and want to buy some to do up also. Took me three days but finally got a GF apple crisp made! This puppy is taking so much of my time! I am sure she will demand less time as she gets trained and older. We are making progress. Look forward to Fridays and reading all the things you accomplish and ideas. Thank you for taking the time in your busy schedule to do that. Nancy

    1. Freezers don't take lot of energy so a small generator will work to keep them going. It may only require a couple hours a day. When you need a generator, everyone else does too and there are none available. You need to buy one now; think of it as insurance.

    2. Dear Nancy,
      Yes you are correct, Teddy is a Black Angas. Most of the cattle around here are. Dad used to have Murray Greys but over time it ended up being Black Angas.
      The Peter Rabbit fabric was a cotton but not a cotton lawn. So it is not as fine but still quite nice. Cotton Lawn I think is perfect but harder to get the variety of prints. Still my no 1.
      Summer and heat is my main concern too re electricity. It is very good you have alternative heating and cooking sources so you are good there. I would invest in a battery operated fan so in the worst situation you would have something that could fan you while you rest. Also misting spray water bottles.
      Puppies are a lot of work but really they train up quickly. It will be worth it!
      Thanks so much! With love Annabel.xxx

  18. Hi Annabel
    Your first plant is paint brush lily, Haemanthus Coccineas.
    It's very drought and heat tolerant as it dies down over summer. Spectacular red flower

    1. Thank you so much! If I get as far as flowers I will take photos so you can see. Whatever this is I know it must have been drought tolerant as it has survived no looking after and extreme heat at times. An amazing red flower would be beautiful! xxx

  19. Annabel Teddy is just gorgeous and good that he took to a bottle so quickly :) and has picked up in condition, likely he was starving to bits when you first bought him home. So good that you got rain as we did.

    The plants you bought home are wonderful and have filled out lovely gardens that you wanted with lovely flowers for nothing but a bit of effort. The lace, ribbons, tin and wool were a true blessing from the op shop as were all those lovely new baby clothing that you were given. The hankies are so cute in the Peter Rabbit fabric as are the bibs that you have made.

    Not a lot accomplished this week or last as we both got the flu so are still recovering but we did get a little done in between snuffles and coughing :) . It has not really been great weather for being outside either being freezing with high winds and cloudy days. We are keeping warm with our slow combustion fireplace going though.

    Our Vicky challenge added up to $91.22 in savings last week.

    In the kitchen -
    - Made all meals from scratch.
    - Baked 3 loaves of wholemeal white bread in our bread making machine saving $10.47 on usual prices.
    - Washed and diced 1kg of capsicums we picked from the gardens making enough for 4 double meal sized portions for the freezer.

    Purchases -
    - I used $20 off our groceries using rewards dollars I earned to top up on tins of wet cat food and some tinned fruit for the pantry.
    - Bought a Wish Woolworths grocery e-gift card from RACQ saving 4% or $6 on usual prices.
    - Purchased 10 x blocks of Old Gold chocolate on half price special saving $25 on usual prices.
    - Bought 6 x packets of butter menthols on special saving $1.20 on usual prices.
    - From eBay using a $5 off voucher code I purchased 8 x after market brand oral B electric toothbrush replacement heads for a total of $3.85 saving $48.55 over buying the branded versions in the supermarkets.

    In the gardens -
    - We picked 1 kg of capsicum from our plants.

    Hope everyone has a wonderfully frugal week this week :).

    Sewingcreations15 (Lorna).

    1. Dear Lorna,
      Thank you for taking the time to share the recipe you use for stain remover. I did make up a batch without the water and used it on a shirt. It worked so much better without the water and actually removed an old, what I thought was set in, grease stain. Hope you and your husband get rid of the flu quickly. Again, thank you. Cookie

    2. Most welcome Cookie and we just use ours without the water and if soaking pour some on top of the layers of clothing and then add the water.

      Glad you had success with removing the stain from your shirt and hope it works for all your t-shirts too. Handy to have the stain remover and so cheap to make a huge quantity.

      Getting better now and feeling a bit more energetic.

      Sewingcreations15 (Lorna).

    3. Dear Lorna,
      I hope you are both over the flu. That can really knock you out for a good while. This is the time your fire and all your stored wood are wonderful to have. Keeping cozy and warm is the best thing.
      The capsicums for your garden sound very good. Very handy to add to a casserole etc. Lot of nutrition too.
      Oh my goodness on the took brush heads! They are so expensive! I never thought to see if there were non branded ones online. What a deal. Ok now I will go try and find more on this! Great tip.
      I hope you are both picking up. With much love Annabel. xxx

  20. Dear Annabel, Little Teddy is such a darling and how lucky for him to find a home with you. I absolutely love reading your blog every week . You get an amazing amount of work done as well as your craft work which was just lovely again this week. I just wanted to let you know that the plant you dug up looks as though it may be a Clivia which is shade loving. It has orange flowers which is the common colour, but you can also buy cream coloured flowers. They are quite tough but I suggest you Google care instructions as they are quite expensive to buy. Have a good week I look forward to your next blog. God bless Bernadette

    1. Dear Bernadette,
      Thank you so much! Thank you for your thoughts on my plants. If I get flowers (hope so!) I will post pictures for sure. Ill be excited by anything as Ill be glad they survived and I have flowers!
      It has been. really good week and I have a ton to report! Thank you for your kindness! With love Annabel.xxx

  21. Hi Annabel, We moved to the Mid North!
    I believe the wide leaved bulbs you asked about are commonly called Ox Tongue. I have some that have come up here. First a small red flower appears - no green at all, disappears and then the wide green leaves appear. I have them in my garden now- just the leaves...... the flowers have gone. I asked around and was told "Ox Tongues"
    I think you may be right about the others being Agapanthus... (but I thought some Nerinnes ??? spelling???? that I bought were Agapanthus so maybe that's what they are.... Aggies do have the wider leaves.
    Love what you are doing on your adventures, projects and amazing achievements on your farm..... (We should all have a farm) Take good care, Stay safe, well and warm.

    1. Dear Jo, Thank you I have heard of Ox Tongue too and have a mental image of the flowers and I think you are right. If I get as far as flowers I will take photos. Thank you. It will be quite exciting when I know what Ive got! It was a pretty nice day and I added to my animal collection (again!). With love, Annabel.xxx

  22. Dear Annabel, I love Teddy, and I love the name too. He is in great hands now- he is lucky to have you. I love the sound of the prayer shawl. It's a beautiful idea. I love the clothes you received and your plans with them. What a great idea about the Summer pyjamas. The baby things would look lovely embroidered. What gifts! The books were a great score. Well done on being so resourceful and digging up the plants. I bought some new looking books from the op shop for $1 for kids, and I wrapped them up ready for Christmas, I thought of doing gift bags with little treats like a bath bomb, book, chocolate etc for the kids that we know. I have been working on the plants and have a few now on my table growing well. I found a pair of black school shoes and put them in the cupboard. I feel I need to do more preserving and crocheting this week. Love to Bluebirds, Lily

    1. Dear Lily,
      I started on the embroidery of the little items. I am trying to do an item per day.
      Good work on the books! I have noticed many brand new and expensive (when new!) cook books. Also some children's books. If in perfect condition to me these are great gifts.
      Gift bags would be lovely. Little treats are special to give and I think this would be great fun for you also.
      Good to have the school shoes ready and put away. I hope you were able to do more preserving and had a good week. I have been crocheting and have two projects on the go so embroidery in the day even if only for a few minutes then crochet in the evenings! With love Annabel.xxx

  23. What a wonderful surprise Teddy was !
    I love how you travel prepared to look for plants and cuttings. I took a cutting from my neighbors succulent and it is going wild.
    In our neck of the woods very small succulents start around $5 a piece.
    We are in extreme drought conditions here.
    Yesterday there was a fire in the foothills. A reminder to everyone that they need to be prepared.
    I added plastic water jugs to my stash. Now we have around 100 gallons. I treated the water it will stay fresh for 5 years.
    I added 2 more propane tanks for my generator and 3 more gas cans. Gas treatment is expensive so I rotate through our gas instead of treating it.
    I have been adding cash here and there to our safe. If the internet goes down or banking goes down you will have no way to purchase without cash.
    I have been adding board games, books, coloring books, decks of cards and dice to my stash. I need Domino’s but I keep looking at Thrift stores first. If the grid goes down for more than a few days they will become priceless. The longest we have been without power is 4 days and it gets old very quickly. I urge everyone to prepare as much as your budget will allow I believe this Fall/ Winter we will be back to lockdown and shortages again.
    I always enjoy reading everyone’s comments.


    1. Dear Lynd,
      Succulents are so good for growing from a cutting! This is a good way to fill a garden!
      Here Succulents are the nursery are even worse. A tiny pot, maybe 3 inches wide is more like ten dollars!
      I am sorry about the rough conditions. Are you in California? The conditions and foothills made me think California.
      Well done on your water storage. Very good idea.
      Also very good work on the fuel. We rotate gas also. People who did get generators many didnt think to store fuel!
      You are doing well and thinking things through. Lots of small notes and change is good since in a power outage no body will probably give change!
      One thing we did with the kids in outages was play marbles. They loved it. Marbles by candle or torch light! It was very entertaining. All your ideas are great. With things to do especially to keep kids happy and occupied these times would be much less stressful.
      With love, Annabel.xxx

  24. What a darling baby Teddy is. I bet he's happy to have a new Mama! You found some great bargains there Annabel. Baby clothes are ridiculously expensive given the length of time they are useful. My efforts pale into insignificance compared to you and the Bluebirds, but I did a big cookup, helped my daughter, who was so sick that she missed her first day of University in four years, by doing all of her washing, cleaning her apartment, trimming her plants and making chicken soup. I've had some great success with potting geraniums and French Lavender from cuttings, and my herb pots are just going gangbusters. Feeling content. Have a lovely week. Mimi xxx

    1. Dear Mimi,
      You are always productive! I hope DD is better. You are a good Mum helping her so much. Chicken soup is still the best thing in the world when sick I think.
      The geraniums and lavender sound beautiful! How lovely!
      Its been. good and hectic week! With love Annabel.xxx


Post a Comment

Popular Posts