Friday, 15 April 2011

On my mind....

Today I have several things on my mind. 

The first one is my gorgeous chooks.  Moulting chicken is getting much better looking as she grows more feathers - she still looks really scrappy though...  Poopy bum chicken is well again, and is back in the run with the other ladies.  She's growing feathers back on her bottom, and starting to look a little normal again too!!!  Yesterday afternoon, Ken rang me and told me that he had collected one of the biggest eggs from the nest that he's ever seen - and that it didn't fit in the egg carton.  I have seen some big eggs before, but boy oh boy, this one was BIG!  I have put it here next to a pen and a normal egg. 

Ouch...  No wonder they squawk when they lay eggs!!!

Tomorrow I'm heading off to Sewing Guild again.  I go once a month, and I am so enjoying the company of the lovely ladies & I am constantly in awe of how much knowledge they all have of sewing & craft.  I have also re-learnt to crochet with them, and that has come in very handy with me signing up to participate in the dishcloth swap that's being run through Rhonda's blog!!!

Next, I'm thinking about my Heart Sister from Simple Savings.  Matilda, one of the lovely ladies on the SS forum has organised this program, where you are matched up with a Heart Sister, who has provided certain information about herself to the organiser.  That information is sent to you, and through the year the idea is that you can send gifts for their birthday, a card or a note or anything like that, just so that they know that someone out there is thinking about them.  It's anonymous, in that they aren't supposed to know who you are, and at the end of the year, all will be revealed.  Your own Heart Sister sending things to you is not the Heart Sister that you send to. 

It's her birthday coming up soon, so I would like to find a small gift to send.  It's also Easter coming up soon too, so I think that I might send two parcels - that'd be fun!!!  I might head to the Eumundi Markets tomorrow before going to Sewing Guild, and see what's around...

Finally, I'm thinking about my upcoming trip to Sydney.  The delightful Michelle & I, along with Sue, are heading to Sydney on Good Friday.  We'll drop Sue off at her parents house for a visit, and then Michelle and I will continue to Sydney via Millthorpe, where a friend has an antique store.  I will march with my RSL Sub Branch on ANZAC Day, and we'll head back up the highway to Glen Innes on Tuesday or Wednesday to go to the Australian Celtic Festival.  Ireland is the host this year, and it will be lots of fun!!!  We have camping organised at the showground, which is within walking distance to the town, and also walking distance to the Australian Standing Stones and the festival grounds. 

No wonder all these wonderful things are on my mind!!!

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Wednesday... hump day!!!

Last night was fun!!!

14 firemen and associated other persons arrived at work with 3 big trucks, lots of lights & we assisted them with a training exercise.  I was the “owner occupier” for the night, and so I got to have a lot of fun playing a person who basically hindered a rescue & fire fighting exercise with silly questions & play acting.   I was in my element!!!  I think some of the watchers were having a giggle when I asked if the bloke who was laying down that had been covered up with a tarp was okay as he was my husband.  I said “thank you for covering him up – he must have been cold.  Is he going to be okay???” (he was actually simulated as being dead...)

Anyway, a fun night at work! Not very often that happens!!!

Didn’t get anything done at home because I didn’t get home till after 10.00 pm...  basically chucked my uniform in the wash and headed to bed!  Oh... we did watch the end of Top Gear – they were riding motor bikes through Vietnam.  Seeing as Gai and I are going to Vietnam later in the year, I thought it was a must.  Absolutely hilarious!!!

I’ve signed up to do a dishcloth swap on the Down to Earth blog.  Argh!!!  I have managed to crochet myself just one dishcloth so far, and I’m part the way through another one, but haven’t put it to use yet.   I suppose that’s a good thing, so that if push comes to shove, I can give away the one that I have done.  I’m heading off to sewing guild on Saturday, I might take my crochet hooks, my book and some yarn and spend some time having a bit of a create there!!!  I need to have a good think about it and see what I can do – I want to make sure that I don’t send something that isn’t any good!!!  Oh, the pressure!!!

Poopy bum chicken is now turning into fluffy bum properly, and “Spot with the allergy to fleas who god knows how she got a flea because she’s an inside cat” is also improving.  She’s such a delicate little thing...  Thank goodness – I hope that’s the end of vet trips for a while!  Ken heads off to work tonight, and I am joining a Biggest Loser club in town.  Well, it started last night but I’m starting tonight due to the fire issue last night.  Maybe I’ll find my mojo there!!!

I've also registered for the Sparkle Connection workshop with Tracy.  For anyone who's interested, here's her website.  I'm doing the Introduction to Life Sparkle in Brisbane in May - I'm really looking forward to it.  She also has courses running in Melbourne and Adelaide, so think about it if you live in that area, she's very good at what she does!!!!

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

A teriffic Tuesday...

I didn’t have to go to work early today, I got to stay home for a bit (well, that was the idea!!!) because the Fire Brigade are coming to work tonight to do an exercise, and I need to be there to supervise them.  I had thoughts of sleeping in, having a leisurely breakfast, then heading off to the Podiatrist, the carpet man, and then to work.  Didn’t kinda work out like that...

Last night, Ken talked me into going surfing with him.  It would have been so easy this morning to stay in bed, but something got me out of bed and into the car.  We headed down to Noosa to the beach and took the Mal with us.  I was lucky – I got to wear the new thin wetsuit material top so I was toasty warm (until I managed to let water in – then it was cold!!!).  I actually had a lot of fun – got up on my knees a couple of times, but haven’t managed to stand up yet.  The day was gorgeous, clear blue sky, warm in the sun and really calm ocean.   The waves were little, which was also good – I didn’t want to be in pounding surf! 

I guess we were there for maybe an hour?  Got home about 9.00 am, and had breakfast and a yummy shower, then headed to the Podiatrist where my foot got all strapped up.  Hmmmmm – it’s hurting a bit now!  He’s not sure why I’ve got a sore foot, but we’ll give this a go and see what happens.  Back to him next week.....

Then I headed over to Carpet Choice & handed back the samples.  Finally – we have decided!  Sydney Blue Gum flooring and a Stainmaster very pale cream carpet for the rest.  Bad news – can’t have it till May, but that’s not so bad because we’re away anyway for the end of April at the Celtic Festival. 

Gives me more time to sort stuff out too!!!

Will be home late tonight, so no decluttering tonight.  On SS though, I have posted on a thread which has reminded me that it’s only 8 pays for me till Christmas.  8 pays!!!  After Friday, it’ll only be 7 pays!  I have started the Limoncello, which is now a lovely lemon colour in the pantry cupboard, so maybe I’ll be able to give some of that as gifts – will wait and see.  Maybe that with some chocolate truffles, or some cheese or something....  I don’t know – can’t bear to think about it yet!!!

I think I need a cup of tea – it’s afternoon tea time!!!!

Monday, 11 April 2011

Monday already!!!

Well!!!  What a remainder of the week and weekend it turned into!!!

Just to update you – when you make things like Lemon Delicious pudding, they’re much better if you read the recipe and put the milk & flour in where they’re supposed to be, not turfed in at the end because you forgot!!!  Oops – better luck next time!!!

I spent Saturday mostly in the car – went from home to work for a couple of hours, then from work to the A family in Ipswich, picked up mum’s computer, went to mum’s house, installed said computer, and came home again.  A round trip of about 400 klm I guess.  It was nice though – we’ve just been so busy lately that we haven’t put aside any time to do nice things, and this was one of those nice days.

On Sunday we trotted with the A family (a different family!!!) down to Noosville to have breakky while their son attended a fishing workshop with Phippsy.  Amazing that Phippsy – he can be on the radio AND running a fishing workshop – all at the same time!  I must be so naive – I really thought that he recorded that stuff on Sundays live!!!

We left the boys at the club & the girls went off to the Noosaville Farmers Market.  Gosh I love that market – all the produce is just so fresh, and it’s locally grown or caught.  I bought a few things that I thought were well priced:

Avocado’s – 3                                                    $  5.00
Silverbeet – 1 bunch                                          $  3.00
Banana’s – 3                                                      $  4.50
Grape tomato’s – 2 punnets                              $  5.00
Bag of mixed lettuce leaves                              $  3.00
Freshly made spaghetti – 2 bags                       $10.00

All up not too bad – I'm quite pleased with the purchases.  I don’t mind paying for good quality produce that’s going to last, I have a bit of an aversion to paying for things in the supermarket that turn out to be rotten in just a day or two though.  Can you see the basket to the left of the photo?  My mum has a granny flat attached to her house, and she has a number of ladies from PNG living there.  When I was decluttering towels & sheets the other week, a lot of them went to the ladies who took them home to PNG.  They gave me this gorgeous basket in return which was lovely of them and totally unexpected.  It's a wonderful basket though to take to the market because it hangs from your shoulder with long straps, and it is quite wide at the bottom, so fits a lot of stuff in.  I had all these things in the basket, along with wallets, keys etc., and there was still room to spare!

We went home after the markets and washed poopy bum chicken again – she’s getting much better.  We moved her pen again, and then let the other girls out.  They were so excited to be let out that they were running and flying around the side yard!!  They then went to the dirt pile and fluffed themselves around in it for a couple of hours – they get so dirty!!!  Bald chicken is looking even worse, which is good because she’s now growing back more feathers, so she looks scrappier but in a couple of weeks she’ll look good again.  I hope she hurries up – it’s cool at night and I’m not a fast knitter, so she won’t want to be waiting for me to make her a jumper!!!

Then the lovely CC from the SS forum came over with Mr C to show me how to make bread in my bread machine.  We made potato bread, which was yummy!  It didn’t rise quite like hers, and she thinks that might be my machine – we left it to go, and it cooked well and turned out nice in the end, so maybe I don’t need another machine.  She also brought some freshly made hot crossed bunnies, which Ken is VERY taken with – he had a couple last night!!!  Anyway, we were outside enjoying a cup of tea when this procession of people arrived.  First of all B & H arrived, and 30 seconds later S arrived, then L & C arrived, then R arrived, who’s S’s daughter.  Then H & B arrived, S’s husband and son....  we put the pig on and had a little fire, which was yummy, and when everyone left Ken and I had toast over the fire with the new potato bread. 

Haven’t done much decluttering in the past few days.  It’s getting closer to the time when we’re going to replace the floors, and that’s a bit frightening!!  God I hope it looks good!!!

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

A peaceful Wednesday evening...

I love it when it's quiet at home...  I get two nights per week to myself - different nights each week as Ken works a 4 on/4 off roster, 2 nights and 2 days.  The days when he's on nights it's just me at home, and it's lovely.  I so enjoy me time - and it keeps us both refreshed in our relationship because we do spend time alone.

Tonight I've tried to get myself organised for the rest of the week.  I've had a bit of a clean up, put the dishwasher on, got out food for tomorrow night (it's my turn to host the weekly dinner with the A family...) and found food for Friday night too while I was upside down with my legs hanging out of the deep freeze! 

Spot is here with me, whinging a bit as per normal.  She wants to be picked up - that's what kittens want.  Stripe has now completely pulled the stuffing out of her duck - and I have found bits of it all over the place.  That's what kittens do!

Popped over to Val's place tonight and took her the other dozen eggs that we didn't have on the weekend!  Came home with a big branch of basil and 3 more yummy smelling lemons - mmmmm, love lemons!  So - tomorrow night I'm going to have a bash at making Margaret Fulton's Lemon Delicious Pudding...

Poopy bum chicken is still isolated but seems to be a lot better than she was.  She's not pooping anywhere near the amount she was, and her feathers down in that region aren't as icky as they were - they're even a bit fluffy on the ends...  The other girls are whinging now because they're locked up till Sunday so that they only have the water in their bowl till then which has the cocciddia (something or other) medicine in it, and they want out.  White chooks are now trying to rush the door as I go in.... I have to foot them out the way!!!  (that's the term for elegantly sticking one's hoof in the direction of said animal and they move backwards....  I don't actually touch them though unless they run into me!!!)

Lunch today was a success with the smoked salmon baguette and breakky worked well with the sandwich in foil.  I toasted it in the toaster machine, still in the foil - no cleaning of said toaster machine (have I mentioned here yet that I'm bone lazy?????) and better still, didn't get anyone else's gunge off the toaster machine.  Seriously, some people at work are just feral...

That's about it for tonight I think.  I have paid some bills today (finally - oops!!!) and sorted out some paperwork.  One day I'll find my desk again under all the paper!!!  Nearly tax time - that's when I sort, file and chuck!  Well, I don't chuck - I take to work & chuck into the secure shredding bin.

I hope you are all having a great day/evening/night - whatever the time is where you are.  Remember to take some time for yourself - it will help to clear your mind.  I am consciously thinking of these things now, and I have to say I do enjoy them.

I'm off to see if I can evict some junk from the bedroom right in time for the delightful Miss S to come and clean tomorrow!!!

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

How's Tuesday going for you???

I had a good day... 

Woke up to the alarm at 5.00 am.  Snoozed it till 5.25 am ('cos you can't snooze it any more than 5 times & then it demands to be turned off!!!), then Ken asked me to reset it till 6.00 am...  so I did!!!  I just love rolling around in a warm comfy bed, checking out the sky getting lighter and looking at the lovely trees waving in the breeze.  There's something so comforting about snuggling under a feather doona when it's cool outside!!!

So.... tonight.  Err.... lots of sandwich making!!!  First of all, I used up the ham & cheese & froze sandwiches for breakky.  Then I made smoked salmon & cream cheese baguettes.  After that I put the hot crossed bunnies with butter on them into the freezer too.  Lots of stuff to simply go and get out of the freezer now when we need food!!!

Poopy bum chook had her last tablet tonight, and was most pleased when I also gave her mince to gobble up (and green beans... ick I hate beans!!!).  The other ladies also complained because they weren't allowed out of their pen and had that icky water and no freedom.  Tough!!!

I'm also doing washing tonight, and will shortly have to go and hang out and bring in said washing.  Does it ever end???

I did also have on my list to clean out the top drawer in the bathroom tonight.  Not sure that's going to happen, but you get that.  Have also chipped a finger nail, so better go and repair that before I have another scratching episode like my big toe where I got a mozzie bite & itched it till there was no skin left...........

Okay.  Photo time.....

Here's how I do the sandwiches.  Spread out a loaf of bread and get to work.  See the chook on the window sill?  That was a part gift from the delightful Clare P, an SS person who needed their retro chook to go to a good home.  I just love it, it looks after my rings, and also has the measuring spoons in one place!!  It's such a happy chook!!!!  Thank you so much Clare - it brings me such happiness!!!

I've put the sandwiches in alfoil this time.  I usually do them in glad wrap, but one of the guys at work had his sandwiches in alfoil and didn't then need to clean the sandwich machine.... so I'm giving it a go!!!
Here's the smoked salmon, cream cheese & dill baguette...

This is Stripe - one half of the wonder kittens.  That THING is her duck.  Yes, it's stuffing is hanging out.  Bad Stripe for playing and killing duck.  Bad mummy for not fixing said duck......

This is Spot - the other half of the wonder kittens.  Yes they look identical.  Yes, they have spots and stripes depending on their name.  Yes, they're spoilt......

I think it's bed time!!!  Good night all - hope today has been bright & shiny for you all!!!!!

Monday, 4 April 2011

And now it's Monday again...

The time just flies by doesn't it?  No sooner is it Saturday, than it's then Monday.  We did have a lovely weekend - went all sorts of places on Saturday, some successfully, some not.  We didn't get the china cabinet - they didn't advertise truthfully and it had water damage and was NOT in fairly good condition... it'd been living in the shed for a couple of years, had water and structural damage, was filthy, and didn't have a Silky Oak top...  enough said!

Anyway, we got some carpet and laminate samples, and then invited the A family and the C family over to check them out and give us their opinions.  A couple of glasses of wine later and we had all made the same decision that Ken and I had made...  pale cream carpet, and either a Blackbutt or a Sydney Blue Gum floor.  We're waiting on the quote, and once that's received, I'll pick myself up off the floor, gulp a lot and find some money!!!

I've had a busy night tonight.  I've made Limoncello - so will see how that turns out in a few weeks.  I also made preserved lemons with the abundance that I have at the moment.  They were $2.99 for a kilogram so I have two kilograms, plus what was already hanging around at home, and then another neighbour came down this afternoon for some worm wee, brought me a lovely bunch of flowers, and also gave me some lemons.  I love where I live - the neighbours are all so friendly, we know lots of the people in the estate.  Every one of them are lovely - it's the kinda place where you leave your front door unlocked (when you're home!!!) and people come visit and just knock & come on in if the door's open!!!

Here's the Limoncello on the left, and 2 large and 2 smaller jars of preserved lemons.... mmmm - Tagine's in winter will be coming right up!!!  Do you see the lovely bunch of flowers behind the jars?  That was my gift from Val!!!

Roger's been really busy.  I put him on once every day, just in the Kitchen/Eating/Media room.  After about 5 days, look what he's picked up!!!

Did I tell you that one of our chooks was moulting?  God she looks just sooooooo awful!  I hope she hurries up and grows those feathers again - she's going to be chilly if the weather turns!!!

Decluttered a pile of jars tonight - I'm going to turf them into the recycle bin.  I know I need some, but really I had a whole shopping bag full, sure don't need that many!  Felt nice to be able to do that and get just something out of the house!  Also chucked into the bin a half eaten, half cut up woollen blanket.  Don't have space for stuff!!!

Hope you are all well and happy - it's beddy bye time for this little duck right now! 

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Ahhhh.... the weekend!

So - here it is Saturday morning.  I'm supposed to be heading off to the Patchwork Angel to do a sewing course on how to make a little zip up bag, but I hurt my shoulder somehow yesterday, and I just can't go.  Even doing stuff like bending over to pick up the washing from the floor to put into the machine has its limitations.  I'll give them a call in an hour or so and see what I can do.

Also got to go and have a look at a friend's floor - she's laid the same sort of laminate timber floor as we're getting, and then head down to Carpet Choice at Noosaville and choose some flooring!!!  We then have to wash poopy bum chook, spray her, give her a tablet, and give all of the girls some new water with other stuff in it just to make sure they're healthy...  **sigh**

Then we have to go and pick up a new silky oak display cabinet at Brighton, a bit over an hour's drive for us.  Don't worry - there is one cabinet leaving in exchange for one arriving!!!  OR... maybe I might keep the display cabinet and use it for storage of my craft stuff - that would solve that issue that I have.  Hmmm... stay tuned for that one!!!

Washing is on, Ken is still asleep, I'm enjoying this lovely sunny morning.  Everything look so clean and lovely outside - it's been raining a bit on and off the past few days. 

I'm really looking forward to spending this weekend doing what we love here at home - I'm starting to really turn into a homebody!!!!

I'll post some pics later on - I really want to show you what a moulting chook looks like...  poor thing!!!

Friday, 1 April 2011

A couple of days of not much...

Wednesday night was fun - we went to the A family for dinner, and had a lovely seafood pie and a spinach, avocado & green bean salad.  Yummo!!!  In fact, the salad was so yummy, I took the leftovers for lunch yesterday, and as no-one was much interested in the seafood pie leftovers, took them home too for the chookies!!!  WNWN!!!

Speaking of chookies, poopy bum chook was taken to the vet on Wednesday.  She has some sort of a bacterial infection in her stomach, and a contact allergy on her tummy...  She has been given antibiotics & a cortisone spray to help her feel better.  I took her back last night for a further injection, and she gets one more tonight.  She's less red on her stomach than she was, which is great news.  I don't think she likes going for a ride in the cat box though!!!  The vet had a constipated python there last night - he'd eaten a tampon a week or so ago which they had removed, but he hadn't pooped all week, despite being filled with laxatives every day.  Poor snake...  he was cold when I touched him, and he had been given some anaesthetic to calm him down a bit so his tongue was kind of flicking around a bit.  He was a lovely looking snake - it was nice to be able to go in and see him.  Buzz (the fantastic vet) was going to give him a warm soapy enema.  Lucky snake.  (lucky Buzz!!!)

So - poopy bum chook is happily living in her own chook tractor, the other 5 are happily living in their quarters.  Oh yes, broody chook is now not broody, but she's moulting.  God chooks look TERRIBLE when they moult!!!  She's got big patches of skin all over her, she looks like someone's dragged her backwards through a fence!  She'll be okay in a week or so - hope she hurries up and grows more feathers before it gets too cold!!!

Tonight I will finish off the Pumpkin soup, and get organised for tomorrow.  Big day tomorrow - I'm doing a class at Patchwork Angel, then we're going to pick flooring at Noosaville, then I have an EBay purchase to pick up at Redcliffe, and I would like to drop in and see the divine Miss M who hasn't been well this week.  I hope to be able to report on more decluttering that's been done later on tonight!!!

In the meantime, this is the yummy salad - courtesy of

Pumpkin, bean, spinach & avocado salad

1 butternut pumpkin, peeled, cut into 2.5cm cubes
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
200g green beans, topped
100g baby English spinach leaves
2 avocados, cut into 2.5cm cubes
100g flaked almonds or chopped macadamias, toasted


1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 cup olive oil


1. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper. Place the pumpkin, cumin and olive oil on the tray and toss to coat.

2. Roast pumpkin in a preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, tossing occasionally, or until cooked through and coloured on the edges. Place in a large serving bowl.

3. Meanwhile, bring a medium saucepan of water to the boil over high heat. Blanch the beans for 2-3 minutes or until bright green in colour. Drain and refresh in iced water. Place in the serving bowl.

4. Mix the dressing together in a small saucepan and warm through.  Add the spinach, avocado, almonds or macadamias and dressing to the serving bowl and toss to combine.