About Me

My photo
Fifty six year old empty-nester. Wife to one, mum to four and nan to three precious grandies. Living simply is my passion, I enjoy growing food, living healthy and playing with a variety of crafts. I am always up for a bargain and love to op shop for vintage treasures.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Weekly Update - What a great week!

Hello dear friends,

This week I decided to switch off the computer for a few days and concentrate on getting back to my simple life. I find that I am spending way too much time looking at things I would like to do on my laptop instead of actually doing them. And as for facebook, I will say no more! 

While the internet is a great resource it is also a consumer of precious time. So for the majority of this week I have been doing some gentle living and enjoying the slower life. 

And I did notice that time. went. slower. 
No hustle or bustle, just going about my day without pressure...

I enjoyed getting out in the garden on the sunny cooler days. 
I mulched the plants and watered the barrels.   
The last time I watered the barrels I didn't have to water again for nine days!

The soil was still just damp when I topped them up again.

In the nine day period, there were quite a few very warm to hot days. 

As the plants get bigger I guess the water wont last as long. We will have to wait and see.




The lettuce and baby spinach are still doing well.  I must plant some more of these to have a supply all through summer.

The baby spinach is not so much baby...

They are huge!

The Tayberry had one flower appear. Not sure if this means anything... 
Sorry I couldn't get a better photo of the flower but the plant was moving around in the breeze ha ha!

I am picking mulberries.  
These are being put away in the freezer until I have enough for a crumble.  Yum, yum!

While out driving, we saw an opportunity to collect {free} more rocks to use in the  wicking barrels. We sought permission to be able to get some of the leftover rocks from a pile that had been dumped. After we were given the okay, we took the trailer and loaded the rocks up and brought them home. This will save us quite a bit of money as buying these can be expensive.

The heap.

What a workout! 
Of course us girls had to do all the work!?! Nudge, nudge, wink, wink! 
{Ha ha as for the hubby...He was just standing around taking photos!}

It was such dangerous work! We had to battle big spiders and a snake! Oh, and the strong wind that was blowing...

So now all we have to do is unload it...groan!

I spent time in the kitchen. 
Nothing new about this except I enjoyed my time cooking and baking this week. I didn't feel rushed because I had organised myself (not wasted time on the computer)by writing out a menu plan for a month and sticking to it for the week. 

I made Mexican Chicken Casserole using leftover roast chicken. It does not look very appetising but it was definitely enjoyed by those who ate it.  
I even received compliments! 
You can find the recipe here
Thanks Cath.

 This made enough for leftovers and a meal for hubby's work. I added fried rice to accompany it.

 I also cooked Beef Cannelloni for the first time.  This also went down a treat with the family, so will definitely make it again.

I baked a chocolate cake.

Peanut butter and chocolate chip biscuits using Wendy's recipe.

I baked some and froze some for later.

My grandson stays over on Wednesday's so he can go to Scouts. I needed something for his school lunch so made some toasties.

Savoury Fingers 
{adapted from CWA Fingers and Forks cookery book}

Five or six slices of bread {also nice with a french stick}

Mix together
1 1/2 cup grated cheese
3 tspns Worcestershire sauce
3 tspns tomato sauce or relish
some chopped bacon
one beaten egg

Spread onto bread and grill until done.

I cut them up into fingers and put into the freezer for when my grandson needs them.

I made an old favourite


Banana Caramel Pie.

I dried breadcrumbs outside. 

And mushrooms and zucchini...

Here are the quandongs I dried a few weeks ago. 
These will be put into jars shortly. 
3.3kgs all up!

 A very pretty cactus flower.

 I was gifted a compost bin.

I do believe this sleepy lizard could soon be a mama...

 For those interested in the progress of the shed.
 It now has a cement floor!

They laid the concrete inside the shed the first day, and outside the next.

The work was started at 5.30am Monday and finished Tuesday afternoon.

This is the spot where the car hoist will go.

  I just had to include this photo of cuteness!

Our friend came around and she brought her "kids" for a ride.  These two are such characters. They had been naughty on this day, can you tell?

 Some gorgeous roses the same friend gave to me. 
So pretty...

I made time every day to sit outside with a cuppa and my favourite magazine.  I used to sit outside and read these books from cover to cover.  
How I have missed doing this...

Will I continue cutting my screen time down?  I think I will most of the time, there is too much living to do!

 What about you? Do you think you spend too much time on the internet and not living your life to the fullest?

Take care,


  1. Up and over here, we will probably have our first frost this weekend.

    1. Frosts for you Gorges and heat for us. Hotting up to 98.6F {37C} on Monday.

      Do you get snow where you are?


  2. You have been a busy bee. I spend a lot of time on the iPad when I'm not having a really good day. But if I'm good I'm outside. So I guess it's like therapy for me.

    1. Therapy is good Angela, especially when you are not well. To zone out on the computer, can boost the soul for a bit.

      I am on the computer today catching up with blogs. I have decided to have Saturday as"my day", to do what I like. Mostly computer time with blogging and you-tubing :)


  3. Yes, spent too much time on the 'Net so I up and deleted my blog. I've not felt this free in a looooooooong time!


    1. Kelley ...this explains what I couldn't work out! Waving. Xxx

  4. Oh Kelley, I am so sorry to hear you have deleted your blog. You do sound happy with your decision though.

    I have thought about doing that many times, last year especially. I think eight years is a long time to have been blogging. I have slow internet so it takes hours and hours to do a post. {would probably be better to kept posts short and posted more often}. I have made many friends through this blog and it has me torn as to whether I should continue or not...

    For now I have decided that only on Saturdays will I do a blog post. This will be my only day for blogging, facebook and youtube. I need to break away from this time consuming addiction :)


  5. Yep, spend more time on the internet than I should. I'm trying to cut down and not check everything and everyone out.

    Love all the photos Tania especially the roses. They are just beautiful. A little bit of sunshine.

    Thankyou for sharing the ins and outs of your life xoxo

    1. Dear Wendy,

      It is so easy to get caught up with all that is on the internet. It just goes on and on and can become an obsession. It is a good idea to keep in control. Cut down if need be. I don't need to know what everyone is doing lol! I just need to know what I am doing!


  6. You've hit the nail on the head, sometimes it's oh so easy to sit at the computer blogging about life rather than getting out there actually living it.

    I think I'll give myself a time limit for the next week and see what difference it makes.

    1. Hello Sue, thank you for dropping by and leaving a comment. It is great to have you visit.

      I am taking just one day a week for internet browsing and blogging etc. That day is Saturday. Not sure how long it will last as I do like reading interesting blogs like yours :)

      Have a lovely week!


  7. Oh im very guilty of that to Tania and in fact as i was reading your post i stopped and went outside for a while, hung 2 lots of washing on the line, swept the outside area, did some poisoning around the front and sides and picked some asparagus, came back inside and put some dried fruit to soak for me first time ever christmas cakes im going to attempt to make lol So a couple of hours later im back to leave this comment lol That banana caramel pie looks amazing, and you must be very happy with the concreted shed now, it looks great and i love all the other pics to, please dont give up your blog as i love reading your posts xoxoxo

    1. Oh good Karen, I got you off the computer lol!

      I am home alone today and I am trying to catch up with what I have missed all week. I have been relaxing all day, but I will be busy all week again until next Saturday.

      Believe it or not the internet will still be here when you get back...lol

      I am not giving up the blog just yet. I am nearly at 500 posts...wow!


  8. I do most of my net time in the early hours, I need very little sleep. I am surfing my blog list now as I am going out soon and had half an hour to kill. I post most days but then will have a busy spell and miss 3 or 4 days.

    1. I think the early morning would be a good time to blog. I would need to set a time limit on myself though otherwise time just slips away from me. I am an early riser so this may suit.

      I used to blog every day, then in 2013 and 14 I lost my mojo for blogging and didn't post hardly at all. I battled to get one post a month in. Then this year I decided to have another go, even starting another blog {I don't know how I thought I could fit that in lol}.

      At the moment it suits me to blog once a week with an update of our weekly adventures.

      Thanks for visiting Pam, it is great to hear from you :)


  9. yep guilty as charged! i started knitting heavily after i lost the old man (pet) & wasn't turning the computer on til later in the arvo, this has made a huge difference, my depression even broke! have been enjoying the creativity immensely. though at the moment have arthritis in my hand & so haven't been doing much today & am on here instead
    those roses are beautiful!
    congrats on the shed getting finished
    thanx for sharing

    1. I am glad I am not the only guilty one Selina.

      I think it is a good idea to get things done before turning on the computer. Trouble is, I have developed the habit of sitting with my cup of tea in the morning to read a couple of blogs but I seem to be still sitting here a couple hours later lol!

      This week my depressive mood cleared up too and so did my eye sight!


  10. Replies
    1. I know Lynda, tell me about it!

      If I dare asked for an automatic washing machine or dishwasher to make my life easier...well you know the story and the answer! Cheaper than a pit in the ground apparently. We have guys and cars in this house so a hoist was deemed a necessity!


  11. You are so right about screen time. That new shed is a wonder to behold - wow. Ahhh grassroots mag and a cuppa - you and me both.

    1. Screen time has its good points, but I feel it is taking over lives, mine included!

      I thought you would be a GR fan Phil :)


  12. Tania, like yourself I have made some great online friends especially since I started up my blog. I have learned a lot from blogs such as yours and always follow along to see how your barrels are going etc. Since I have retired I don't have the social interaction that I used to have with my colleagues so I enjoy ' getting to know' others online. I do try not to spend too much time online though as I think you have to be sensible and not let surfing the net become an addiction. You do pack a lot into a week I must say. Now I have to go and ask Mr.Google what a Tayberry is. See what you have done! ;-)

    1. I love my online friends too Nanna Chel, and would miss them dearly should I decide not to blog anymore. Posting once a week seems to be a good solution, that way I can have the best of both worlds.


  13. You did heaps Tania! I love that you hit free gravel.
    I have to keep computer time under control. I try and use it as breaks and rewards but I love my friendships that I have formed ie with you!
    Can you tell me what you think might be the going rate for the blue barrels you get for cutting in half? If you don't mind? Are they hard to get?
    The dehydrator is going great! And I love banana caramel pie!
    Also I bouthg Grass Roots magazine for many years. My favourite book growing up was Carla Emerys giant encyclopaedia of country living. Do you know the one? It had everything in it. I love that book.
    We had a good week. And today I got heaps done. I washed the windows and we just did heaps around the house. It was a massive day! I am tired but in a good way.
    Thanks for a beautiful post. You are doing so much good work. With love, Annabel.xxxx

    1. Dear Annabel,

      The barrels can be hard to get. The going rate is $35 at Paramount Browns. You may have to wait until they get them in though.. You can put your name down for some. Otherwise auctions etc. We picked our lot up for $15ea at the recent auction. Make sure they have had safe stuff stored in them though.

      I haven't heard of that encyclopedia Annabel, but you have my interest now. I will do some research :)

      I am still waiting to do the rest of my windows but first I want the whole of the outside of the house washed down. It is covered in dirt! Phil can do that or teach me to use the pressure cleaner.

      I felt that same tired this week, it feels good...


    2. Thanks Tania for this information. Also you will seriously love that book, maybe ask the library so you can check it out. Xxx

  14. Moving all that stone is one heck of an accomplishment - well done!!

    Tania, you say you have three broody chickens. How do you move them from where they are nesting, to a more chickie friendly "nest" - just pick 'em up and plonk - will Mama Chook find them...? Tweedle Dee is so high above ground (2 - 2.5 feet) - how am I going to get them all safely down to ground level with Mama happy with the move?

    1. Dear Dani,

      The broody chook will follow her chicks. Just move them all to a safe place after they hatch. Hopefully they wont get too adventurous before you move them. If you want to move mama before hatching, do it at night time :)


  15. I totally agree with you Tania bout the screen time. A balance is very important.
    Things are looking good in your parts. And there is some light rain falling here (it won't last long though) so it's time to grab a cuppa and sit on the veranda.
    Have a great week my lovely friend.

    1. No rain here Tracy, things are very dry as usual.

      Sitting on your veranda with a cuppa watching the rain....sounds divine :)

      Wishing you a great week also Tracy,


  16. You've achieved so much Tania. I'm always tired after reading your posts...but good tired...lol! You're spot on re the screen time. I give myself a standard block of time in the morning, and once that's up I'm outta there. It can be a real time waster otherwise! Love your roses, and I can just imagine how tasty that Mexican bake thingo was. We love Mexican here. Freaky thing shovelling rocks with snakes and spiders....eeeeek!!! Happy family here...we are just about to plant Mulberries, Figs, Cumquats, Oranges, two types of Lemon, two types of Lime, and Mandarins. We'll get Mango, Macadamia, Avocado, and tropical stone fruit trees at the end of November. I'm so excited. Musician Husband has resisted for 15 years, but now that it's HIS idea, it's a good idea...lol! Love, Mimi xxx

    1. So glad to hear you are planting all those fruit trees Mimi. You won't regret it and neither will your hubby :)


  17. I miss the 'Life in the Country' blog...I made that cake one and it was great and huge!

    I do spend too much time on my ipad and phone...it becomes habitual. I have tried to not hop on them the minute I get home but potter, doing small jobs first. Or knitting 10 rows of my throw rug...
    I watched a lot of Lark Rise to Candleford on the weekend which was very relaxing. I love that series...
    We've started watering our lawns now and my garden has bounced back as a result. Roses are so hardy down this way. Total neglect plus some water and they flourish.
    That banana caramel pie looks divine but I'd be the only one to eat it and that is not good!

    Cheers - Joolz xx

    1. I miss that blog too Joolz :)

      That's good news about your lawn and roses. I have started to water our dead lawn and it is coming back slowly. I am sick of all the dirt and a small patch of green is so refreshing :)


  18. Oh Tania, Wayne has a serious case of shed envy! He was almost drooling and when he saw the car hoist - I thought he was going to ask you to adopt him!

    I spend way to much time online ;) but I have a strict schedule I stick to and it works. I know 'puter time is for work and I tend to get stuck in and get things done, then I can move on to other things. I do check often during the day, but I think that's because the lap top is always on, so it's easy to just move the mouse and see what's new.

    I do love the times we are out bush and don't have internet or phone reception though - those days are so relaxed and calm. We get up as soon as the birds start and go to bed when the stars come out, sometimes earlier and it is peaceful.

    Great find on the rocks for the barrels, what a blessing! And your plants look wonderful, they must like the barrels.

    I second Annabel - you will love the Encyclopaedia of Country Living - it is huge, think newspaper size, but packed full of good ideas with pictures and instructions for all manner of good things.

    Hope you're enjoying your week :)

    1. I love getting away from it all too Cath, especially with no phone reception, that is a bonus. I enjoy the sounds of nature and lately have been taking in all the beauty that surrounds me...

      The plants are doing really well in the barrels. I checked them yesterday and they have grown heaps this past week.

      I have that book on watch on eBay, just got to decide whether I need or want lol!


  19. I too spend too much time online/ Every morning while I am enjoying my cuppa I check blogs and I would like to say that is it but as everything is so easy on my phone and it is with me most of the time that is where I spend most of my time. Maybe I should consider turning it off.
    I used to buy Grass Roots but haven't now for a few years but it had lots of interesting information. The banofee pie looks yummy and a favourite of mine. As usual you have had a productive week. Debbie x

    1. I stopped buying Grass Roots for a while too Debbie because I wasn't reading it like I used to. But now I have renewed my subscription and am determined to read them again, simply because I enjoy sitting outside browsing all the simple life stories. Some great ideas and lifestyles contained within :)

      I think I was born a hippy lol!


  20. Oh yes, I've noticed that I'm starting to spend too much time on this "thing" so the time has come (thanks for the boost/shove. I NEVER turn the TV on during the day, except for Landline on Sunday, so why am I sitting at this laptop, for few minutes here and there, during the day when there is oodles of stuff I need to be making in the kitchen? Too hot outside to do any gardening. Grass Roots is my one and only mag purchase as well. Used to borrow from the library, but my daughter gifted me a subscription. That banana caramel pie looks sensational. Is there a recipe for that somewhere on your blog?

  21. Sure is Sally :)


    This recipe uses tin caramel, but there are recipes on the net that use homemade caramel :)

    I am sitting in a pool of sweat here at the moment. It is 43C outside and really, really humid. I have left the swampy air conditioner off and I am sitting here with fans going flat out and a wet towel draped over me lol! I think I am going to have to put the air con on shortly though...

    Wishing you a great day!



I love reading your comments and will do my very best to reply. PLEASE NOTE that if using an anonymous account to comment, you MUST add your name within the comment otherwise I will not publish them. Thank you for understanding.