Feather your Nest Friday, 14th January, 2022.

What a week!  I was hoping to write a preparedness post and catch up on replies... but I ran out of hours in each day.   I am going to try and incorporate preparedness information here tonight.

I will start with the good things.   It was my Birthday and Chloe made afternoon tea for Mum and I. 

It was just beautiful.  Chloe made the cake also...

It tasted as good as it looked too.  

Our news here was all Covid.  Covid and shortages.  Also limits on things ie paracetamol, toilet paper etc. 
In the supermarket things were low.  I was able to get things but not the things on my list.  My planned out shopping list didn't match what the store actually had.   I think I have brain fade in the shops.   Because of this and how things are I know it is a mistake to think "I will just forget about it and look for it next time"  as the items I could buy instead may also be missing next time as well.  So I tried to buy alternatives and buy what WAS available. 

Lucy warned me that to do a click and collect shop I would need to do it four days ahead... as the web sites say "no spaces available" for several days... my usual make an order the night before to be picked up the next day is no longer an option.    So on Monday I did my order for Friday pick up.   Last night I reviewed the order as you can add items before the pick up day.   Lucky I did this, about one third of my order now was unavailable.  I went through it item by item and found alternatives... sometimes it took me two or three goes to find an alternative that was available... 
In the end I got everything from that order except lettuce and ham.  Lettuce is worth gold now.   
I can see this could get a lot worse as the covid numbers are going up dramatically day to day.  So we need to think and be smart!   

I did some mending... some leggings for the little girls,  I took up two dresses for myself.

In the garden I planted more pumpkins... maybe too late but I only have two vines that are going well.  

Each day I picked tomatoes.  They are just delicious.  

I was given 10 kilos of beautiful honey! That is 22 lbs! 

Wendy gave me lovely crochet cottons and I gave her eggs.

We spent a day outside Thursday working in the garden and I now have a nice little fence around my kitchen garden.  This will be so much better.  At this point I know what I can grow well and what I can't.   And also what parts of the garden I can grow veggies.  Dad warned me that gum trees will send roots into anything and pinch your water and nutrients.  So anywhere near the gum trees is no good for veggies.   My back courtyard is protected from the wind and container gardening does really well in there.   I am learning.

Andy gave me another stacky planter, I have it filled with soil ready to plant up. 

A shade canopy needed a repair.  I did that on my sewing machine and it is as good as new. 

We had some hot days.  Then we had a storm and lightening!  Oh great,  lightening is how all our fires have started.   And some did start, not on our place but near by.  Luckily they were all contained fairly quickly.   Each time a fire starts it is a drama and stressful.  You feel on high alert. 

I headed into town and I realised my air conditioner in the car wasn't working.   Then I realised my car had lost power.. I pulled over and that was it.  Dead car.  Very luckily I was only 15 minutes from home,  I had phone reception and so did Andy and he came to get me.  Much of the time there is not phone reception so it was a big relief when he answered!

It gets better.  The RAA (the motor fix it membership) were not answering due to the hot weather and an overwhelming number of calls for help.
When we finally got the car towed... the repair place said they are short staffed,  due to covid, and can't look at my car for around two weeks.   Then there are shortages of car parts... 
As it turns out someone did look at it and declared it toast.   I am not too upset because I have been driving and older car that is pretty dinged up for the last few years.   At the end of last year I knew there were new car shortages.  Some cars are on order for two years!   So I knew I really should try and buy a good reliable car while I could.   I ordered a car which is meant to be here in February.  We will see!
Cars are so hard to get that in the UK it can cost more for an old car than a new one... because the new one is so hard to get an old one that you can get it worth more!  A bird in the hand... 

At this point every aspect of life is getting to be affected by shortages.   Think hard about what your family needs... if a need is coming up try and attend to that now.  Mum and I combined and bought new winter coats and clothes for the Grandkids even though we are mid summer.  The things we know are important we are trying to be ahead on.  Be ahead on any prescriptions if you can.   A town near us the chemist closed... due to covid.  The local hospital closed for several days...  
Some things I found I kind of expected.  Others were a shake up.  The local hospital closing was one that shook me.

In between all of this I did some things as I could like washed some windows,  planted out some succulents I collected. 

I sewed a stack of soft flannelette hankies.

In the evenings I crocheted cotton shower puffs.  These are really fun to do.

Since we lived here there have been two huge cement rain water tanks down the bottom of the yard that are not connected to the house.  In winter they over flow with beautiful fresh rainwater that is wasted!   Finally they are plumbed into our other rain water tanks and they double our house rain water supply.

So that was my week!  It was bumpy!  But we made it!

How did you build up your home, pantry, garden...   How are supplies in your area?   We love to hear and very often you are helping or encouraging someone else when you share your week also.xxx


  1. Dear Annabel, what a week! What a shame about your car. I am glad you were able to order one and that you should have it in February. I drive an older car too, I love it! Most people seem to drive new cars these days. It has all be about covid here too. I can't quite believe it all. I have been staying home mostly, so that has been nice. I went out today and I couldn't quite believe it. Some people vigilant with mask wearing, other not wearing them at all. Many restaurants and cafes here are closed due to staff shortages. Lots of tourist type places are also closed. People have such varied opinions to I want it now, to the polar opposite. Half the time I don't know what/who to believe. Basically I have no idea if something will be open here anymore and just have to grab the opportunity when I see it arise. I did my online order and thought I would be able to collect it the following day, well no, it also took days here. I did a much larger order than normal. I noticed that some substitutions were less than what I had ordered, but I was glad to get a similar item (I would never have thought that a while ago). I also got my husband to buy a fair bit of meat at the butcher (although alas, we don't have a chest freezer yet) and I went to another grocery shop and bought a little more of what I couldn't buy online. Meat, frozen goods, dairy, pasta, tinned tomatoes, toilet paper were all low. I think it may be worthwhile teaming up with a family member and friend and if you have some things that you need, you can buy one for each other when you see it. I think it will be a hard time because not only are there shortages, prices are rising. We must use up all odds and ends in the fridge and freezer. I made cheap of mashed potato, some I froze to put with another meal, some went with meat and veg and some I put with a tuna mornay pie. So if you can stock up on something, use it up. Well done on getting all of that honey! That would cost a fortune in the shops! Well done on stocking up for the grandkids. I recently have cleared up the cupboards and have given away a few bags of clothes (that feels nice), I went to the op shop and found some sizes up in clothing, some books, a board game and doona set. I was really happy. I stocked up on a bit at the chemist. So I have spent a bit this week, but I think these may be the bird in the hand scenario. Hopefully, we can have some more outside/garden time and crafting tomorrow. Lots of love, Lily.

    1. Dear Lily,
      Thank you. It is a confusing time. Staying home is a good thing though.
      In order to stock up for the kids I turned a chest of drawers into a future chest... things for the kids and babies. I add a lot to this. I think you are right... prices are rising rapidly... so if we see something we use available then go ahead and get it if you can. You are doing the same as Mum and me! It does feel good. I hope you have a very good new week! With love Annabel.xxx

  2. Annabel and Bluebirds I have had 3 friends need new cars this year - they are women on their own and have managed to get a decent new car without getting badgered by the sales men. One was a replacement for a badly hail damaged which was only a couple of years old. Her new car came via someone dillydallying about the car and the salesman said he had waited long enough for this person to get their act together and it is now yours, if you want it - she did and she took it.

    Our daughter sent me a text tonight saying that her Coles order had lots missing from it - toilet paper being one of the items and another was tinned tuna. Told her she needs to come and shop at my supermarket in the house. Normally I wouldn't worry but she is down the Gold Coast where Covid is rampant. Someone else I know only had part of her Woolworths order arrive so she has reordered in the hope that she will get the rest tomorrow. I did a small delivery order from our local IGA - no leeks which are my onion so taking advantage of my husband not only looking good but also feel good yesterday morning I left the house on the hunt for leeks. Found them at Aldi. I picked up extra so that I can process them and I have them here for soups and casseroles.

    Last week I restocked the freezer with mainly chicken which is hard to get.

    My week has been busy looking after my husband who ended up having a short hospital visit (it should have been longer but he wasn't really with it and just wanted to get home) so I have spent most of the week making sure that he was drinking, taking his medication, when he finally got some, and washing - actually washing a lot because he has had high temperatures and PJ's and the bedding needed changing every day. Today is his best day so far - no afternoon nap and eating good portions at each meal.

    We have an appointment with the doctor tomorrow morning so hopefully we can get some answers as to what he has been fighting. I think he has depleted my paracetamol collection that I had been slowly building up. That will be on my list for next week.

    This is only going to get worse before it gets better.


    1. Dear Lynette,
      It was great how your friend got that car! I found with my Woolworths order some of the things were there and went into my "basket" but the next day they were removed... we went around and around till the last day.
      I am so glad it sounds like L is really improving. You had a long difficult week! Yes do re stock what was depleted. It is amazing how fast you can go through supplies when someone is sick. Hope this will be an easier week for you Lynette! With love Annabel.xxx

  3. Good job on getting the water connected. I would have thought you would be growing lettuce in your kitchen garden. Glad you got most everything you needed

    1. Dear Cheryl, Thank you, it turns out even better, the tanks we connected would fill three of our yard tanks and there are two of them so its more than double the capacity all up. I am going to grow lettuce, I will try in my stack planters. On the ground I didnt succeed due to birds, bugs etc. The stack planters are up off the ground so Im in with a chance. Also I am spouting.. and being creative with salads! Have a good new week! With love Annabel.xxx

  4. Happy birthday! Your birthday cake was just beautiful. Your daughter must be quite the baker.
    Sorry to hear about your old car but happy you had the foresight to get one on order months ago. Here in the US used car prices are up 37% (if you believe the news) and new cars also take time to arrive. I drive a Volvo that has 229,000 miles….would love 100,000 more! A newer car will have to be considered at some point.
    We are definitely experiencing shortages in our grocery stores as well as price increases. For example, recently butter has gone up a dollar at our Aldi. A whole dollar! And lots of holes on our shelves. Yesterday I slipped out early morning to see if I could find any mark downs but they were scarce.
    All of the sewing you good folks complete each week has me thinking I should give it a go. These little kitchen cloths y’all create are just precious!
    Happy planning Bluebirds! I am praying for you today!
    Susan in Virginia, US

    1. Dear Susan, Thank you! Used cars, trucks and tractors are all going up here too. If people cant get new they are turning to used and so the prices are just going up and up.
      A little bit of sewing most days really is very nice and you get so much done. Even simple cleaning cloths are lovely and nice gifts. Very practical. I like to see a pile of things Ive created by the end of the week. Thank you for your lovely comment and your prayers, with love Annabel.xxx

  5. Dear Annabel,
    Wishing you a very Happy Birthday. The tea Chloe made for you and your Mum is beautiful. The cake she made -- what a talented daughter you have. The tea set is just gorgeous.

    Our State is having a huge uptick in Covid cases. So much so that regular mail delivery has stopped and only packages are being delivered by the post office. We have been requested to go to the post office directly to collect our mail every few days. I put in an order to Costco this week and although it says 2 day delivery, it has now been 5 days. Hopefully it will arrive today. Many things are being limited to one per customer in our area. Regular granulated sugar is one item that was one to a customer. As I continued to search I found that organic turbinado sugar was not limited to I made up the difference with that. I was able to do a big chicken and turkey stockupp from the farm markets that we shop at. This week there were no scallions, cucumbers, peppers and a few other things.

    This year's seed catalogs have begun arriving and we have spent reading them and planning our garden with an eye towards what did well last year and what didn't. I've been busy in the craft room making boxes and embellishments to hold gifts that are being made to restock the gift pantry. Menu planning to see what new things can be come up with with what's on hand, especially making new meals out of leftovers. My son's fiance give us a beautiful orchid plant for Christmas and we've been enjoying watching all of the orchids blossom. This has been especially nice considering we are in the throes of winter with more snow expected on Sunday. In the kitchen, loaves of English muffin bread were made for my husband, some gluten free sugar cookies for me using cassava flour, gluten free naan, bone broth, egg roll soup, cream of zucchini soup from the base that was frozen over the summer. I tried a new to me recipe for sweet potato waffles, which were just grated sweet potatoes and egg that were mixed together and put in the waffle maker and cooked until crispy. These are a savory waffle and can be used in place of a bun for a sandwich. We loved them.

    All the usual dusting and fluffing got done. Wishing all the Bluebirds a safe and healthy weekend. Blessings, Cookie

    1. Dear Cookie,
      Thank you! It is funny with sugar as I saw in the USA some sugar is made from beets. I had never heard of this I only know of sugar cane. Well sugar, pasta, milk, rice etc were all on our list of limits... usually 2 per customer.
      I know with your garden produce and good pantry you will be able to come up with lots of beautiful meals. The waffles sound good! I am interested to try that! Gluten free naan is beautiful... rolling them out the yoghurt makes them silky smooth!
      Have a good week to you also! With love Annabel.xxx

    2. Wow, Cookie! What State are you in? I’m in Ohio and didn’t buy more butter this week at Krogers sale for $1.99/pound box (limit 5) because they have had it on sale so often at that price over the past 6+ months that even at limit 5, I have an abundance and no need for more for quite a while!
      And baking supplies have been on clearance sale at Krogers where we got chocolate chips (75 cents a bag) at one, brown sugar (2 pound) and flour (5 pound) for 99 cents a bag at another location and then granulated sugar (4 pound bags) for 99 cents at the Krogers closest to me. They have literally had huge pallets of them with no limit. My daughters and another friend and I scout around when we go to the store and then shop for our little group. But even buying 100 pounds of the granulated sugar this week, we didn’t make a dent in the amount they had available! Wish you were somewhere close to where I am so you could take advantage of these prices!

      Gardenpat in Ohio

    3. Wow, Cookie! What State are you in? I’m in Ohio and didn’t buy more butter this week at Krogers sale for $1.99/pound box (limit 5) because they have had it on sale so often at that price over the past 6+ months that even at limit 5, I have an abundance and no need for more for quite a while!
      And baking supplies have been on clearance sale at Krogers where we got chocolate chips (75 cents a bag) at one, brown sugar (2 pound) and flour (5 pound) for 99 cents a bag at another location and then granulated sugar (4 pound bags) for 99 cents at the Krogers closest to me. They have literally had huge pallets of them with no limit. My daughters and another friend and I scout around when we go to the store and then shop for our little group. But even buying 100 pounds of the granulated sugar this week, we didn’t make a dent in the amount they had available! Wish you were somewhere close to where I am so you could take advantage of these prices!

      Gardenpat in Ohio

    4. Sugar from sugar beets used to be a lot more common than it is now. Sugar beets were grown and refined in Idaho and Utah, and possibly other states. I live in Idaho, but not where sugar beets were grown. U&I Sugar was a big brand when I was growing up, but it has been out of business for a number of years. It was owned by the Mormon church. White Satin was another brand of that era. I looked it up on Wikipedia and it is now sold to commercial users. I don't know about store brands, but most of the sugar sold in the US is refined from sugar cane. C&H is the big brand. I don't know about the present time, but Britain was self-sufficient for sugar during WW2 because they grew and refined sugar beets. I think the reason the Brits refer to the vegetable as "beetroot" is to differentiate between the two.

  6. Hello Annabel and you had a very productive week and Happy belated birthday to you and the cake that Chloe made is just divine as is the design of the tea cups and teapot on the table :) . It must have been a week for repairing clothing in both of our homes. Glad there was no fires from the lightning strikes

    I thought I would let you know that sometimes it is better to ring the grocery manager and put in a special order for groceries to pick up. Usually we do this about 4 - 5 days in advance and our order is there ready to pick up when we go to town. This is sometimes a better way of doing it and getting a more complete order. We have gotten to know the names of a few of the grocery anagers nd can ring them up and do special orders with them ahead of time.

    Yes there are shortages here I noticed on frozen vegetables and chips, tinned fruits, toilet paper, paper towels, panadol and we saw one chemist with a whole display shelf empty as they couldn't get stock. We have opted for the if we see it on the supermarket shelf and we have used it to get it then and there.

    Our Vicky challenge added up to $79.66 in savings last week :) .

    In the Kitchen -
    - Baked 3 loaves of wholemeal white bread in the bread maker saving $10.47 over buying it locally.
    - Cooked all meals and bread from scratch.
    - Made and packed sandwiches for lunch to take with us for long days when we had medical appointments for DH. We also go shopping on those days to combine errands.

    In the home-
    - Cleaned and organised the back patio area.
    - Picked and set to dry brown onions picked from the gardens.
    - Planted green dwarf bean seeds in one of the vegetable garden beds.
    - Collected shower warm up water to wash hands and clean around the home.
    - Collected our air conditioner run off water to water shrubs in the garden around the home.
    - I and DH repaired quite a few pieces of clothing on the sewing machine so we can use them longer.

    Earnings -
    - DH earned $160 doing a mowing job.
    - I earned $32 by selling a 4pce set of strawberry placemats and coasters I made on eBay.

    Purchases -
    - Bought 2 large Steggles family roast chickens on special reduced from $5.50 kg to $2.90 kg saving $14.15 on usual prices.
    - Bought 19.27kg of sweet potatoes for $1.99kg at Gatton Big Orange saving $46.48 compared with buying them in the supermarkets. We will blanch and freeze these for stocks for vegetables in the freezer.
    - Purchased 5.74kg of chicken drumsticks from Drakes Supermarket for $2.50 kg saving $8.61 on usual prices. That now fills our chicken drawer in the freezer which I am happy about.
    - We also purchased a lot of tinned vegetables and fruit as we found them on the supermarket shelves to keep our stock levels up.

    Hope everyone has a wonderful week ahead and are able to get the grocery products they need for the home :) .


    1. Dear Lorna,
      The smaller grocery store in town I think might do this so I am going to ask. Thank you for that suggestion. During the week I saw Greg Hunt on TV suggested all families need paracetamol on hand. I thought well that will go out of stock since so many people keep nothing on hand. I know you keep ahead on such things like I do. Thank you for sharing what shortages you are seeing. It is great to take a packed lunch when you head off for appointments. Also with your lovely fresh bread on hand they would be delicious. You combined to bring in a lot extra income!
      The chicken was a fantastic price. The sweet potatoes bought this way were also a great deal. You showed that even now there are still deals to be found. I have seen now how back up frozen and canned veggies are a good thing. While we love fresh having a back up is valuable. We were low on salad ingredients but tomatoes from the garden and tinned pineapple filled in some gaps and were delicious!
      Have a very good new week. Many thanks Lorna, with love Annabel.xxx

    2. Thank you Annabel and the special orders I put in were for Woolworths and Coles but admittedly they were large orders so worth trying there as well as the smaller grocery store in town if it is a larger order :) .


  7. What a lovely tea set up - happy belated birthday! I have a niece who bakes amazing cakes like that - your daughter is very talented.

    Covid is exploding here as well although we expect to peak by the end of the month - keeping my fingers crossed. Places like theatres, gyms, sporting venues, museums etc. were all closed again just after New Year. Stores at 50% or 25% capacity. We have had strict masking rules since the start of the pandemic but now we are all urged to use KN95's. Schools are due to open again on Monday but since 5 to 11 year olds just started getting vaccinated about 6 weeks ago and most aren't fully vaccinated everyone expects it to be a bit chaotic. Heppa filters have been shipped out for most classrooms and KN95 masks will be available for all teachers and staff plus Rapid Antigen tests will be handed out on Monday (they are like gold here)!

    I have been working from home - fully again - but will pop in today as I have to head out to get my booster shot anyway. I'll pick up a few more grocery odds & ends on the way home and then will probably shop again on Sunday ahead of a big snowstorm due on Monday. So far things aren't too bad on grocery shelves - although some items can be a bit hit or miss. I do expect things to get a bit tougher starting next week as new vaccination rules go into effect for truckers crossing the Canadian/US border! Luckily, I only have myself to worry about and I am pretty well stocked but when I do go to a store I do try to always pick up a few more things to add to the long term pantry, along with the weekly fresh items. With our Winter weather to contend with I've always done a good stock up so that I didn't have to go out! Guess we'll just have to wait and see how it all pans out.

    Hope this week isn't quite as stressful for you - stay safe.

    1. Thank you Margie! Oh wow you have a snow storm on top of everything else! I saw this regarding the truck drivers. It sounds like a fair few drivers will no longer cross the border. It will be one more thing to consider. I am glad you are well organised.... the winters you get would have been a life of knowing to be ready. I hope you have a good new week too! With love Annabel.xxx

  8. Happy birthday! Wishing you good health, hapiness and strength for many years to come. 🍰🥂🎈Our corner of the world (Romania, mid-eastern Europe) has increasing numbers of C-19 cases (10000 per day). There are some products missing from the shelves and all the prices have risen. Electricity, heating, cooking oil and potatoes are the highest. Also, a big polar vortex is on our area, and it means everything is solid frozen day and night. I sometimes feel like walking on a tightrope. Staying inside, being calm, keep knitting, crocheting, sewing, painting helps a lot. As I work everyday from 8 to 5 my evenings with my boy and my husband are precious💞 Take care everybody, big birthday hug, Annabel. Love from Laura_s_world

  9. Happy birthday! Wishing you good health, hapiness and strength for many years to come. 🍰🥂🎈Our corner of the world (Romania, mid-eastern Europe) has increasing numbers of C-19 cases (10000 per day). There are some products missing from the shelves and all the prices have risen. Electricity, heating, cooking oil and potatoes are the highest. Also, a big polar vortex is on our area, and it means everything is solid frozen day and night. I sometimes feel like walking on a tightrope. Staying inside, being calm, keep knitting, crocheting, sewing, painting helps a lot. As I work everyday from 8 to 5 my evenings with my boy and my husband are precious💞 Take care everybody, big birthday hug, Annabel. Love from Laura_s_world

  10. Happy birthday! Wishing you good health, hapiness and strength for many years to come. 🍰🥂🎈Our corner of the world (Romania, mid-eastern Europe) has increasing numbers of C-19 cases (10000 per day). There are some products missing from the shelves and all the prices have risen. Electricity, heating, cooking oil and potatoes are the highest. Also, a big polar vortex is on our area, and it means everything is solid frozen day and night. I sometimes feel like walking on a tightrope. Staying inside, being calm, keep knitting, crocheting, sewing, painting helps a lot. As I work everyday from 8 to 5 my evenings with my boy and my husband are precious💞 Take care everybody, big birthday hug, Annabel. Love from Laura_s_world

  11. It is amazing how everything seems to be the same world wide. A huge limb fell out of a tree and smash the top of our van. It is on a wait list to be fixed and thankfully we can still drive it. When it goes in on Feb 9 it is supposed to take five weeks to ix and w do not know if there will be any rental cars available. We are like you at the stores. Get what we can and put what we did not back on the list for next time and always be watching for things we will need later.

    We have a new baby grandson born last Saturday morning. He is a sick baby and he has had to stay behind in the hospital. No one has been able to see him but our son and DIL and they cannot take pictures where he is so all we can do is pray. A close friend had a heart attack and went to the hospital by ambulance and they parked him in the ER waiting room for 7 hours! We could hardly believe it. And then he had to wait for two days to have the blockage cleared. He could have died and I am sure you know the terror of that with a husband with a heart condition and I know it well, too. Are we ever going to be back to normal?? And what is that?

  12. Happy Birthday Annabel! The cake looks beautiful :)
    Wishing you a blessed week ahead.
    Much love, Heidi xx

  13. Hi Annabel and everyone,

    Happy birthday Annabel! What a beautiful tea set and table. I'm so sorry to hear about your car! You did really well shopping and making things; those shower puffs are pretty.

    It is pretty bad due to covid here, too. Lots of businesses and schools closing (remote learning is an option for most, although one school district shut down today because of number of illnesses). Canned/tinned fruit seems to be in short supply here. I did a grocery pickup about a week ago, restocking dry goods and some household things and frozen veggies and fish (fish fillets have been very hard to get - frozen fish sticks with breading, no problem. But they had lovely fillets last week!) We are really thankful for our local farmer who we purchase beef and lamb from - our cow went out for processing last week (it has been hard for them to get processing dates here for animals, for a few months now), so our beef will be ready for pick up in another couple of weeks. We will be fine until then, but it is lovely to think of getting it filled up again. We also filled prescriptions and I took advantage of a great sale on lotions and other personal care items to build up my gift and personal care pantry (75% off!) I used some gift cards from the holidays to add some more books to our home library, too.

    My husband hung a double curtain rod in our bedroom, so I could have sheers and blackout curtains (we have been getting bright light at night from a floodlight well behind our property) - it looks pretty and has been great for room darkening and I think it is blocking a draft I didn't realize we had - we will see if that shows up on our energy bill! I did a good deep clean of the bathrooms and cleaned out and organized the linen closet/medical pantry. It is embarrassing how disorganized it had become, but it is tidy now and I was able to order a couple of things that had expired - I wouldn't have realized it otherwise.

    Cooking-wise, I've baked bread and muffins, and cooked ahead for dinners and lunches this week. We are very lucky to be back to working from home at least until February, so we can be safe and cozy indoors. I hope others are able to do the same.

    I hope everyone has a good weekend, and has what they need. <3

  14. Hi Annabelle and everyone who reads.
    A few years ago I read a comment here that suggested going to the Joette Callebrese website to learn homeopathy. Oh my goodness, whoever posted this, THANK YOU!!
    I went to her site, and it has been a journey into learning how to help oneself, friends or loved ones!! There are other sites, like Dr. Homeo, who also offer insights into healing with homeopathy. Search the Internet. There is a lot of information available. In these crazy days, any way we can help ourselves is a big plus. I get a lot of my remedies from Ainsworths in the UK.

    Homeopathy is a medicine that can be stretched and shared. I ask my friends to get their own bottles and I'll gladly share any remedy I have with them. There are tools, like a materia medica and a repertory, that one needs so one knows what remedies can help with what. I've also learned how to self test (kinesiology/energy reading). Helps takes out the guesswork. One can Google how to do this.
    To use the sugar pill remedies, I put one dose in a 1 ounce amber dropper bottle and fill with 20% alcohol (vodka) and 80% water, let it melt, shake 100 times, and it is good to use. Shaking is imperative as it transfers the energy from the pill into the water. As the remedy is used, refill with vodka water and shake. The remedy will get stronger because the more one dilutes homeopathy, the stronger the remedy becomes. Any kind of sweetener gives me a migraine so this is imperative for me. The alcohol keeps them "fresh." I have nail polish shelves to put the bottles on. Our office walls are covered with our remedies.

    Finding a friend to go on this journey with one is a good idea. Two are better than one. Three are even better. Help each other.

  15. Happy Birthday Annabel 🎂😃

    What an interesting and productive week you have enjoyed!

    I was somewhat surprised at the food shortages at the shops this week. Places like your blog kept warning me of this, and for the most part I was prepared enough, but over the Christmas season, I had let some basic supplies dwindle, and I didn’t realise this until it was too late! So I found myself trying to do a stock up in shops with almost bare shelves!!

    I had no problem getting meat at the butcher but there was none at the supermarket! The butcher told me that even he was caught out with chicken last week! He’s got a big order in and he says if he gets it all it will be fine, but I guess he won’t know until it arrives!

    Our ride on lawn mower has been dying a slow death for about 4 months, this week hubby set out to buy a new one, well wasn’t he surprised to learn that there is very little stock available, most places aren’t expecting an order until April, and that is IF it arrives at all!! One place had just received their order and the mowers were flying out the door! Hubby had to act decisively and bought one on the spot! I’m glad he did!

    I used my pressure canner for the second time ever this week, and I cooked up a quadruple batch of Sloppy Joes and pressure canned it. This was the first time I had canned meat, so I was a bit nervous last night when we opened the first jar, it had been on the shelf for a week, I knew the lids had sealed but it was still satisfying to hear that suck/pop sound when I took the lid off, the first thing I noticed was how lovely it smelled, just as if I had just cooked it! This was a good sign!! Anyway I heated a jar of it up and dinner was ready in 5 minutes!!! Homemade food that quickly!!! I’m so excited to make more and more meals in a jar!! And it tasted perfect!!

    Having canned meals is a big way to be prepared for food shortages! For the record, my quadruple batch made 4 quart and one pint jar, so 4 and a half ready meals on the pantry shelf!!

    Speaking of pantry’s, I gave my pantry a big clean out this week, it was so cluttered and messy after Christmas, it had a thorough going over and it’s so much better now, keeping our pantries in order contributes to our preparedness, as it gives us the opportunity to see what we have on hand and what needs using up!

    Well haven’t I prattled on this week LOL but I was just so excited about my pressure canning exploits! Have a good week Annabel, see you next Friday!!

  16. Dear Annabel,
    It's been a busy day so I'm just getting to read your weekly post while dinner finishes.
    HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! What a delightful tea party. The cake Chloe made is gorgeous with the flowers cascading down the side.

    At the store the paper goods aisle is usually decimated, toilet paper low or not to be had, same true for tissues, paper towels etc. I always buy whatever frozen veggies we eat that are available, some weeks just a few packages on the shelf. Fresh fruit is low as well, but it's winter here.
    I am adept at substitutions, but find it sad to see people in a state of dismay at the store. The one lady looked at the lack of toilet paper and wondered aloud to her husband what to do. i turned to her and said, "Buy tissues, napkins, paper towels, they all work, you just can't flush them." I I see the same in the produce or other aisles. Blessings, Laura

  17. A beautiful cake that Cloe made. She has a lot of your talent! The tea set is beautiful! You will enjoy your raised planters called Greenstalk here and shaped a bit different. I am still looking for the best way to water mine. I hope your car comes in as ordered. We have not been getting togather with family since Christmas because of covid stuff and after a week of visiting every night till Christmas with them I really miss that. Hope your week goes better this week! Nancy

  18. My son had to get a new car since they are expecting their third child in a couple weeks. He had hoped to get a good used car but none like he needed had been available. So, they ended up buying a new car. I pray over our older car a lot since we usually buy cars about three years old and now the cost is not worth it.

    I'm writing today about how my grocery shopping has changed this past year. I do love coming here and seeing your (summer) world.

  19. Dear Annabel,

    That cake is gorgeous. What a sumptuous looking tea! Happy, happy birthday!

    I laughed when I saw your bath scrubbers...my Mom made us each one this year for Christmas. Great minds think alike!

    For the most part, we just don't see major shortages, here in NS. Maybe it's just that I'm not out and about too much? I did read that the feds backed down here on the vaccine mandate for international truckers, due to pressure from industry. (Though they're keeping really quiet about it...to save face, I guess.) We have such a high rate of vaccination here, I don't get the fuss over the last few holdouts. Mostly it's all politics, but we're all the pawns in the game/being affected. The truckers have been the only ones moving back and forth over that border since March of 2020 until recently, and I haven't heard that they're big spreaders...mostly they've been hailed as heroes! It's unconscionable to pick that bone right now when there are more than enough troubles with supply chains! Vaccinated or unvaccinated, Omicron is ploughing thru...and hopefully will burn itself out. Looking forward to summer!

    We had a huge snowstorm here last night, and are snowed right in. We've already made two forays out to move snow, and I think a few more are on schedule to get us cleared out. It's winter!

    Wishing you a great week!

    xx Jen in NS

    1. Dear Jen, I am glad you are not seeing shortages there. Also about the truckers. I saw that brewing as a potential really big problem!
      In my mind I imagine what if the snow mounted up in front of the doors and windows how do you get out!? You can tell I have no experience with snow! I am glad I know you have a good pantry though! And if you are stuck inside I am pretty sure you will be busy with some knitting! Have a good new week! With love Annabel.xxx

    2. Ha! Actually, that CAN happen with the snow, but it's not usual to be so bad that you can't get out. The main problem is when you get high winds and lots of snow and it drifts badly. A few years ago we had a really bad storm...We woke up in the morning and wondered "Why is it so dark in the living room?" And it was because the windows (which reach almost to the ceiling) were covered in snow! The snow drift at the corner of the house where the wind comes off the river was as high as the first storey! That took some time to shovel! Luckily that wasn't in front of the door! We are still shoveling the snow we got night before last. I think it will be cleared by this afternoon...We are definitely feeling our muscles! (It's called the Budget-Minded Workout Plan. Ha, ha.)

      xx Jen.

    3. I'm not really seeing shortages in PEI, either. (Jen, is NS meaning Nova Scotia?). I have heard chicken stock is low, but it has not affected us. With our large garden, canning, raising meat birds, buying food and supplies in bulk orders ... maybe basement, Provision Room and canning room are filled to the brim! Not to mention the freezers! I surely would encourage those who can ... have a LARGE garden - don't just plant for summer eating - plant for year round.... it works wonders.

  20. Happy birthday Annabel! Have a blessed weekend! Take care Bluebirds.

  21. Belated Happy Birthday to you Annabel. That is a very pretty party spread in your picture. I hope that fire yesterday was not too serious. The difficulty in getting information even up here near Adelaide was ridiculous. I could see the CFS pager site had lots of units attending.
    Stay safe everyone, wherever you are.

  22. What an amazing cake and beautiful tablescape! Chloe did an incredible job!
    Hope you had a lovely birthday, Annabel. Your week sounds productive and it sounds like the garden is going well.
    Sorry to hear you all are still so locked down. Our family caught the variant, omicron. My husband even developed pneumonia and was hospitalized. Most of the nurses that tended him were travel nurses from out of the area (northern Ohio). Many of the medical workers are sick and at home.
    Several schools closed and had virtual school due to too many staff ill. All the pharmacies were offering free covid test through their drive-thrus. And those were backed up with dozens of cars.
    I do recommend a site for effective treatments: Front line Critical Care (flcc.net) this was from a doctor. She also suggested we take 1 aspirin a day for 30 days after covid to eliminate blood clots.
    Blessings to all,


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