Thursday, January 22, 2009

The first tomato harvest!

Yeppers! That's it!! Proudly harvested this morning!
I can't see that sustaining us for a year:-o


Pat's Oat and Linseed Experiment

1/2 cup each of oats and linseed.
Soak in1/2 cup water for an hour.
I added 400g plain flour,1 1/2 cups water, pinch salt, pinch sugar and yeast(as per packet).
Stirred well. I usually use my hands but thought it looked gross:0)
Proved for an hour.
Second last picture is after it had proved.
Last pic is the baked finished product.
It tasted wonderful!!! It is amazingly moist and toasts up well.
It didn't rise as much as I would have liked so next time I'll try less water and have a stiffer dough. I like the one proving as the air bubbles are nice and big.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Defeating laziness??

In an effort to stop lazy shopping and to share the load in the family; I've printed up the recipe or ingredients that we use frequently.
A couple for the kitchen which is pinned onto the inside of the pantry door and one for the laundry containing the cleaning mixes.
Let's see how well it works :0)

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Wow! How hot has it been?

As we don't have air conditioning we have been taking refuge on our glorious beaches.
Look familiar Pauline? :0)

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The wee ones garden

Finally the little laddies have their own gardens. We were given these terrific pots and armed with diggers seeds off the two went. The littlest couldn't help but have a bit of a dig some time later and his garden has be ahem, a little less successful.

Here is the most favourite children's book in the whole house. This is read nearly daily, it is referred to by master 4 when he wants to cook or plant. It really is the best book we own. He adores it. He even knew it had a listing for blueberries when Mum an Dad were flapping around trying to get information to plant ours!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I've been tagged

Karen has tagged me with the tree of happiness. The idea of this tag is to list 6 things that make you happy and then tag others with it and spread the love!

1 Faith
Gods grace, riches and bounty blow me away. Causes joy untold!

2 Family
I married my best friend with whom I share 5 amazing children. I couldn't be prouder of them.

3 Friends
Building meaningful relationships is a privilege.

4 The natural environment
Breathing in that ocean air, the smell of wet ferns and moss.... ahhhhh Sun on my face, looking at the expanse of ocean.

5 Books
I adore my resource books. Christian, cooking, gardening, self sufficiency, health to name a few!

6 Creating things. Gardening, cooking, sewing...
What a buzz to create something new!

Now to tag some one... Kez

Monday, January 12, 2009

Cleaning... well any thing almost!

I have two books that I adore and refer to when a problem arises. They are available on my fav online book store. The book depository (free postage!)

I try use less toxic options and hopefully it's better for our health, home and wallet.

So far I'm really happy with my:

Window/mirror cleaner: Water and metho (4:1) in a spray bottle. Polish with micro fibre cloth.

Multi purpose spray: 1tsp washing soda, 500ml water, 2 TBSP vinegar, 1 tsp dishwashing liquid. 10 drops essential oil.

Liquid soap for showering/bathing: Cake of soap of choice. Chop up and soak in 4 litres water. Blend and bottle. Great on face washes to scrub little bodies :0) Good for hands and hand washing.

Wood polish: Baby oil lightly on a soft cloth (like an old sports sock) and polish up the wood. If you can feel it when you have finished you have used too much. I'd use olive oil but I'm concerned it will go rancid.

Recipe: Potato Wedges

Snack, light lunch or side dish!

So easy! I have one of those groovy gadgets that helps make this a very quick process.

1 kg of potatoes, from garden or purchased insanely cheaply;0)
Chop with gadget, pop in saucepan of boiling water to par boil. I have to add sweet potato as well as littlest has an allergy to the nightshade family.
Drain potatoes and pat dry with clean tea towel. First picture is just after drying the par boiled spuds, with groovy gadget ($14 from House).

Lightly coat with oil and add to coating mix.
Toss into roasting pan or tray and cook 30mins on high. Yummiest if I use the wood stove.
We eat with sour cream!

The coating is the second picture, ready in a large container to shake. I use 1/2 cup plain flour, 1 TBS of the following: garlic powder, cumin, coriander, mixed herbs and sea salt.

Budget 09 The year of no spending! Hahaha...ha?

Ok, so you can't not spend can you! I'm meaning those unnecessary purchases. It's the little foxes that spoil the vines.

Well so far I have not spent for 2 days this year. But I'm still in budget.

Financial goal: reduce mortgage quicker.

Grocery budget for 7 - 5 adults 2 children is $10-$15 a day.

Make sure we have fun. Find and actually do more family fun activities. Camping, picnics, movie nights, beach and river trips more often.

Try not to buy clothes this year, use what's already in our wardrobe.

We always look for the best insurance and utility deals but will keep a look out for new options.

Continue to make our gifts. We are loving this crafting :0)

UPDATE: It worked! We knocked 30,000 off the principle of our mortgage on top of the interest payments. This was definitely helped by the generous Australian government with their payments to help keep Australia out of recession.

Wicked bed update

This is a follow on from an earlier post on our experimental wicked garden beds. So far they are doing brilliantly. They are a great height to weed and otherwise tend to. They only needed hand watering while the seeds where getting established and now we can water through through pipes at each end. So far thumbs up to this project!
We are fertilising with CHOOK POO TEA
Half a 44 gallon drum of water with 12 shovel loads of chicken poo. Stir and leave. To use dilute to a weak tea appearance for applying.

New Door Furniture?

I wonder if this will take off? This nice fat possum gave us quite a fright, one night he opened the door when he used the handle in his climbing :-o