The little birds...

If you watch little birds you will see they are busy and happy! Using whatever they can find they create the most gorgeous little nest.
I would be the little bird with some glittery thread in her nest!
We can be like this. Happily working away with the things that are available to us to create a beautiful and happy home.
All the while with a little song in our heart.

Banner by Free Pretty Things for You.

Thursday, 8 March 2018

Feather your Nest Friday, 9 March, 2018.

This week summer was having a last try to hang on!  Hopefully after tomorrow we will be free of hot days.  I ignored this and went on with change of season cleaning.   I have been working on rotating a lot of pantry goods and things I have in the cellar. This has kept my grocery bill lower and I have just been buying great deals, milk and fresh veggies.

My medical cabinet is coming along and I have found a Homeopath who will help me and she sells remedies in her online shop.  Somehow this took me years to work out but I have always wanted to have homeopathic remedies in my medicine cabinet.
And I have been making up household cleaners, room sprays and purse sprays with essential oils.   I will have a post this, it will be next week I think...

I made up a big supply of Miracle Cleaner.  I had all my supplies on hand and wanted to make a big bottle of this for Hilde as a present.

It turned out a really pretty colour,  the colour depends on the dish liquid or detergent you use and it was a pink one!

I poured all the honey out of the big bucket into jars.  Some of these jars are huge ones.  I didn't want it to crystallise in the bucket in winter as then it is hard to handle so I was glad to get this done.

It was 15 kilos of honey. Some of these will be gifts also.

I had eggs from the farm ganging up on me so I decided to make up fruit cakes.  I made seven cakes in two days using up 20 eggs. 

They are all wrapped up now.  Some are put away for months.  One will got to Chloe's and some will end up back on the tractor with Luke!

I got a free roast chicken in Coles as the visit before they had run out so I asked for a ticket for a free one. 

We have a long weekend coming here.  I hope to get lots more done in my "Autumn Cleaning" and pantry rotating. 

Mum is heading back to the farm tomorrow so this afternoon I am making cup cakes to send back for Chloe and Luke.  

I hope it was a good week for you. How did you build up your nest, save, add to your pantry?
Have a lovely weekend! xxx


  1. Dear Annabel,

    No pantry focus this week as we’re in New England where we got more than a foot of snow last night! TAKE ME BACK TO GUAM! We loathe snow, but we sure love family! Tomorrow everyone will come to my in-loves’ for my 57th birthday!


    1. Many happies beautiful young lady, Kelley have a wonderful day
      Love Lorraine xx

    2. ello Annabel and all you lovely Bluebirders, we have had a very busy week. Bottled 24 bottles of tomato passata/puree. for when we have our slow combustion stove alight in the cooler weather to make tomato sauce (ketchup)and tomato paste, this will save using electricity for hours.
      We sold some of our lambs, very dry/droughty not enough feed, butwe used the proceeds to buy a chest freezer, a new toilet for our soon to be finished ensuite, and 3 lights for when we do the family bathroom, so a good result.
      We are busy getting our large vegie garden presentable for the middle of next month for our Garden club's Open Gardens, ours is a lifestyle, garden with food, chooks, pigs, cows and sheep, so hope people will enjoy their visit.
      However the very best part of the week, is that this morning we became grandparents again to a beautiful baby boy, we are very blessed as this is now no 27.
      Annabel love all that you have achieved this week.
      Love Lorraine xx

    3. Happy Birthday Kelley! I hope it stops snowing just for you! Yes a bit of a contrast to Guam I would imagine! xxx

    4. Dear Lorraine, Congratulations! A baby boy! That is so exciting. Yes that has to be the best part of the week, maybe the year!
      The pasta will be wonderful to have on hand.
      The freezer is a great investment!
      Having the garden club over is a big motivator! I would love to see photos of the garden actually and the animals... gosh everyone here would love to see if you feel inclined to take photos!
      What an amazing week for you! With love

    5. Have a great birthday Kelley :).


    6. Chookasmum congrats on another grandbaby :). Fantastic you are progressing so well in completing your home, I am cheering you on from here.


    7. Dear Annabel, this gorgeous baby is our 27th grandchild and he is just as precious to us as all the others, it is amazing just how much our hearts can love wholeheartedly.
      I will take some photos and get one of my daughters to show me how to post them I am very tech challenged.
      Love Lorraine xxx

    8. Thank you Annabel and Sewingcreations15, for your lovely thoughts, they are very much appreciated.
      Love Lorraine xx

    9. Dear Lorraine,
      Wow 27 GrandChildren! That is so wonderful. I am guessing you didnt have two children lol! I hope for a few more Grand Children but I know I wont get so many as you! From my experience I think I am so hugely influenced in my life but both my Nannas. this encourages me greatly that what we do, say etc impacts our own Grandchildren so much and several generations at least. So important! With love

  2. Hello Annabel and beautiful bluebirds :) .

    You have been busy making lots of beautiful food, cleaning products and gifts for your home Annabel well done and may I say your presentation of everything is beautiful.

    Our Vicky challenge added up to $133.12 in savings this week.

    Here is what we did to feather our nest and save this week -

    Earnings -
    - DH earned $50 from a paid lawn mowing and trimming job for our neighbour..
    - I earned another $20 from the sale of seeds and an eye mask on the internet.

    Financial -
    - Banked more money into our saving for our home deposit account bringing us to 24.06% of the way there.
    - Put the $50 DH earned into the home emergency kitty to build that up further allowing us to bank an extra $50 into home savings this month (included in above).
    - Made $20 from the sale of saved garden seeds and an eye mask I sold on the internet.
    - Downloaded $34.40 from my PayPal account to pay back some of the expenditure we used for bulk pantry stocking of staple ingredients.

    In the kitchen -
    - Made a double layer devils food cake with cream filling and chocolate buttercream icing saving $19.86 over purchasing the equivalent in the shops.
    - Cooked all meals and bread from scratch.

    In the gardens-
    - Trimmed basil plants and spade edged and removed grass from around the 2 remaining vegetable, herb and berry garden beds in the front yard and mowed and weed sprayed the house and back paddock lawns.
    - Harvested 1.9kg of cucumbers from the gardens saving $11.21 over purchasing them.
    - Planted a 3.5mt row of silver beet seeds in the gardens.
    - Thinned out and transplanted at better spacing silver beet, cherry and money maker tomatoes in the gardens.

    Electricity -
    - Saved another $7.50 using electricity sparingly.

    Water preservation -
    - Used saved grey water to water the house paddock lawns for part of the week when it wasn't raining.

    Have a wonderfully enjoyable week ahead everyone :).


    1. Dear Sewingcreations, Thank you so much! Your house deposit is really growing!
      The cake you made sounds incredible! Yum!
      Week by week your sales really are adding up. Sidelines are surprising how much they help I think. Over a year this is all a lot!
      I love basil. Mine has just not bee the same this year and Im not sure why. Normally I have so much but this year it has just been slow. I will get some pesto made soon but normally I make it over and over.
      We are still having hot weather. I am hoping today is the last of it!
      That was a good and productive week! I think your probably had more rain because I keep hearing about rain in QLD. If so then full tanks are good!
      Have a great weekend! With love and thanks,

  3. Hi Annabel, all that honey and lovely fruit cake. Yummo!
    It's still hot and humid during the day here, but the nights are getting cooler. Last night the ceiling fan was off for the first time since November. I noticed that the fan could use a bit of a wipe over. Will add this to the list.
    I made two lots of miracle cleaner this week. It gets used for everything and all the bottles were empty. These two lots should last at least another 4 weeks. I also made up another batch of laundry liquid. I will get 4 weeks out of this as well.
    We have had rain on and off every couple of days. The showers do add to the humidity but the garden is loving it. I have lots of seedlings up. I will be transplanting these over the next week. Just hope we dont have anothe run on horrid heat. The first lot of seedlings I put out in the garden got hit by a late heatwave. Only about 50% survived.
    Bluey bought home more pool sand filters from the tip shop. These have been cut in half and drainage holes drilled. I will gradually get them filled with potting mix and more fruit trees and berries will be planted to add to the collection.
    It's been a busy and productive week here. Life is good.

    1. Dear Jane,
      I keep hearing about rain in QLD but I think further north than you? Also the Bruce Highway closed? I saw some vision tonight, until now the news didnt mention it!
      It is great about your seedlings! Your growing season is so different to ours. We are wrapping things up now.
      The fruit trees are awesome. Also how you use the trees to throw shade on the side of the house. I have remembered that one!
      That was a good week! With love,

  4. Dear Annabel, Your miracle cleaner containers are lovely , especially the one you are gifting ! Cakes look yummy too.
    It's turned winter feeling, the last few days , a big contrast to beginning of the the week.
    Just the usual housework and helping family , baking and cooking are keeping me busy, and sorting gifts as we are in the middle of a few family birthdays.Also writing up notes from your other posts on the Home Pharmacy .
    Have a lovely weekend Bluebirds :-) With love , Maria xxx

    1. Dear Maria,
      I am looking forward to the change of seasons feeling! I love it and it has been hot hot hot!
      Maria I just feel housework, helping the family, baking and cooking all adds up to so much. I wonder where the time goes and usually this is the answer! But the I think what a difference we make for the kids and Grandkids and thats what I want. We just need some time to ourselves too. I dont think I have that balance right yet!
      I hope you had a peaceful lovely weekend! With love,

  5. How wonderful to have all that honey on hand. Besides eating it is great for wounds and a teaspoon will often help an upset stomach. I am so happy that you found a homeopathic practitioner!

    Our big painting project is coming along bit by bit. It is really cold again so it is good to have an inside project.

    At the grocery we got 4 free containers of fresh pasta sauce that we consider a real treat by asking if they would mark them down since they were 3 days from their sale date. I also had coupons on them. They can be frozen so we ate one and froze the rest. Savings of $20.

    We Skyped with our Germany kids and our middle son'S family. Grandchildren lose interest quickly but then we can just watch them play and that is like being there.

    The flu seems to be less here bit some nasty strains of the common cold are really hitting hard. Plague Defense on the feet with socks knocks it right out.

    Have a good weekend!

    1. Dear Lana,
      The Homeopath has already helped a couple of friends as well and this is a huge help. I can now build up my remedies further!
      Well done on asking for the markdowns! Today I am heading to the store at 4 pm as it is closing at 5. Tomorrow is a public holiday so it will be closed. The last time I did this I got great deals! I stocked my freezer with amazing stuff! fingers are crossed!
      Skye is so great for you to see and feel like you are there. I am so glad you have that. I hope they are all doing well, safe and happy.
      I hope the flu is soon over. Of course then it is probably heading our way! I am working to try and be ready. I have place defence on hand. Thank you because you put me on to Hopewell and so much to get me going and it is all paying off. I feel I have learned more everyday and still going. With much love,

  6. Wow! What a much honey. Your cakes are lovely as usual.
    I haven't built up my nest much this week. I was able to aid a friend in carpooling, cooked Thai Chicken Soup for another friend home from the hospital, and prepare snacks for 2 different events. So God has been using me to bless others "outside of the nest". ;)

    We are house-hunting so we are looking for a "new nest". :)

    Have a lovely weekend Bluebirds!

    1. Dear Leslie,
      Yes you have been helping others with their nests! That is very good.
      House hunting! Wow this is big! I hope you find just the perfect place. How exciting! I know this means sorting, packing etc but it is still an exciting time! With love

  7. I went an got the recipe for the miracle cleaner. Can hardly wait to try this. Your labels are so pretty.
    I have wanted to make a fruit cake for ages and no one I know like them so I have no reference for a good recipe. Would you please share yours? and what do you wrap then in to last that long? Are they refrigerated? Thank you. Oh I forgot thanks for the tip of visiting One God Home as well.

    1. I thought to link to the miracle cleaner recipe and didnt think about the cake! This is the link for that... The only thing I would add is that once the cake is dark enough on top, cover it in foil to bake the res of the way as they can end to get too dark. I let them cool 24 hours then wrap just in foil and plastic wrap but if you have a tin that is even better. They keep at least a year. No refrigeration. It is the alcohol that helps keep traditional cakes like this. Once it is cooked though there is no alcohol left in the cake i.e. you are not going to get drunk as the alcohol once heated evaporates off. But somehow it preserves the cake. Also this cake improves... after a week or two it is better, after a month or two it is even better! It is my husbands favourite. Because of the way it keeps it is so handy to have them stashed and bring one out when you have visitors or nothing else on hand. Have a lovely weekend! xxx

    2. Thak you so much. I'm going to try it. I'll let you know how it goes.

  8. Dear Annabel,
    This week has finally been productive. We seem to be on the mend from Influenza B and both were able to stick with the household schedule.
    John seems to be able to better follow the new scheduling I did and things are going good, right now. With the brain atrophy there will be times when he isn't able to function as well, so I am blessed and grateful when things are going well.
    This week I went through many, many books I collected over the years. I am giving some go my daughter and the rest will be donated. It is hard for me to part with books no longer in print, but it is time.
    This month is dedicated to eliminating many things around the house and to getting a simplified schedule in place.
    All of the beautiful honey you received is a great addition to the food and medicinal pantry. Your glass bottles and labels are gorgeous.
    With love and hugs,

    1. Dear Glenda,
      I am glad you are both feeling so much better. Illness knocks us out, it takes time.
      I also am going through things, donating, organising etc. I have a great laid to take to the thrift store this week. It is on going!
      I think the honey is as you say both food and medicinal. I am so glad of it!
      Enjoy your weekend. With much love,

  9. Dear Annabel,
    What a wonderful supply of honey and beautifully put in jars! The fruit cakes look delicious. I'm the only one in our family who eats them, so I haven't made them.
    We are enjoying the flowers in both the front and back yards. This is the time of year that they really thrive. I took a chance and planted tomato seeds and then seedlings, in the fall. We had a very mild winter, so I am now picking a few tomatoes. Plants that are started now have a hard time setting fruit before the hot weather. We are also harvesting some lettuce, green onions, basil and tangelos. I have a container of green onions that grows year round. The basil reseeds itself and grows most of the year, as well. Our neighbors graciously share their lemons, oranges and grapefruit.
    Wishing you a lovely weekend,

    1. Dear Elaine, Your garden sounds wonderful! Also how good to have citrus from your neighbours. This all adds up to so much! I am making it a mission to have citrus all through winter as a couple of the ladies shared that they have stayed well with fresh citrus daily. Here in our town there is a lot of citrus through winter. And I have the honey too for winter lemon and honey drinks too!
      Have a good weekend! We are having a last bit of warm weather. With love


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