Monday, 3 September 2012


 One of my latest crafts is rug making. When I was younger I tried hooked rug making but found it too slow and tedious.

 Recently I discovered a type of knotted rug that goes by the name of toothbrush rugs, or pencil rugs.  It is basically a crochet type knot that doesn't need a hook, just a pencil.  It is so easy to do, and comes together really quickly, which suits my personality beautifully.

  They look good, don't they?

  God Bless,



 Well spring has finally sprung down here in the Southern Hemisphere. The days are  getting longer and warmer, although our nights are still very cold. The chickens are starting to lay more beautiful free- range eggs, and I have been busy  cleaning! Isn't it funny how the end of winter stirs the need to refresh the house, to wash down walls, and make the windows sparkle? Even the fridge got a spring clean.

  In recent years I have tried to use more natural cleaners in our home.   The effect that so many chemicals in our everyday cleaners, can have on my children is worrying. Their  skin absorbs  these chemicals a lot more readily than adults, and only now does science seem to be discovering the damage they can do to our bodies. But I always thought that natural, more old-fashioned cleaners were not as effective. So I began  with good old common vinegar. I have used it to clean my windows and mirrors, and it does a good job. I have found that wiping with old terry nappies works well, and doesn't leave any streaks, which is aways nice :)

  I then tried Bicarb of Soda (baking soda) on my oven. I made a paste, and slathered it all over the inside of the oven, left it for a few minutes, and then took a gentle scourer and scrubbed gently. Now my oven has not been cleaned for a good long time ( to long to mention really) and I do cook the occasional roast in winter, so it was fairly dirty. It took some work, but the bicarb removed a lot of the more cooked on food, and left the oven reasonably clean.  Possibly not as quick and easy as Mr Muscle  would work, but with none of the fumes or chemicals either.

  I wipe down my walls and kitchen cupboards with sugar soap. I haven't discovered a replacement yet, but I am looking.

  I am thrilled that some natural cleaners do work. It seems silly now to buy chemically laden products, and I wonder why I did so for so many years, but it is hard to change what you know sometimes, isn't it?

  God Bless,


Wednesday, 25 April 2012

winning over depression

For the past 20 years I have had depressive episodes. I don't say that I have depression (although a doctor would undoubedlty diagnose such a disease if I told him my symptoms). I don't want that to define who I am.  I have a few family members with depression and they tell me that people see them differently when they find out. I don't want that for my life.
   I think I lean towards depressive episodes rather than a full blown depression.  Many years ago I had post natal depression, and since then these episodes rear their ugly heads every so now and then. Today was one of those days!

  Out of no-where, thoughts enter my head...thoughts that life is meaningless, that anything I do is meaningless, so what is the point of doing anything.  I realise that these thoughts come straight from the devil, but they are so hard to fight! I pray, and read my bible. Then Andrew comes home from work and gives me a hug. He lets me cry and tell him how down I feel, and how much I hate feeling this way. He tells me he loves me, and gradually the fog starts to lift. For me, my husband is my strength at such times. I thank God for giving him to me.

 God Bless,


Friday, 20 April 2012

Good Things

Well the biscuit tin is full, and so is the cake tin. The house has been cleaned, and the washing is inside. Dinner is organised and the children are quiet. How I love a day where my to-do list gets accomplished :)

Apple Rings

My dehydrator is getting a work out at the moment. I have been drying orange  rounds purely for decoration, and apple rings for eating.

My children love eating  apple rings by themselves or on cereal in the mornings for breakfast. I love them in my muesli. With the season of Gala apples so short, it is also a great way to preserve them for the rest of the year ( if they last that long!) . My next job is to get my Granny Smiths into jars as apple sauce, and maybe as a chutney or relish.

 I am trying to replace our store bought sauces, like tomato, BBQ, and Steak, with homemade relishes and preserves, so I need to find recipes while it is apple season, because apples seem to be a staple ingredient in many homemade sauces. When I was growing up we didn't use many condiments at all, so making them is all very new to me. So  my challenge for this autumn is to try out new recipes.

  God Bless,


Saturday, 14 April 2012

I am a career homemaker. I originally studied Nursing, and worked as a nurse for some years at a little country hospital. When I married Andrew, my career changed, and I became a stay at home wife and mum.

 I love homemaking, I love the potential that it holds. Potential to develop so many different skills. I sew and knit, make quilts for all our beds, I make candles and soap, but the majority of my time is spent in the kitchen. I want to give my family the best meals that I can, so I cook from scratch using the best ingredients that I can find. Sometimes I go to the local markets and buy locally produced fruit and vegetables. I try to buy organic where I can. I am fortunate that I have access to reasonably priced apples and pears, and seasonal stone fruit, that I buy in bulk and are organic, but on the whole, organic food is expensive food!

 In  Australia it seems that our grocery prices are climbing higher and higher, and in a large family like my own, my grocery money is often our largest 'bill' in our fortnight. So I am trying to reduce it.

  I could easily buy processed foods. They seem to be cheaper than whole foods, but I don't want to give my family all those additives.  The next best thing  would be to make our vegetable garden more productive.

  In summer we have bumper crops of corn and beans, which is wonderful. But as the colder weather approaches, my enthusiasm for gardening decreases. It shouldn't. Our winters are quite mild, and we can grow many things, but the lure of quilting gets me every time. There is nothing like snuggling under a quilt that you're in the process of quilting!

  So my goal for this Autumn/winter is to keep our vegie garden going, and to produce as much of our own food as possible.  Red and green cabbages, Savoy cabbages ( I always think that those crinkly leaves look so lovely on a plate), beetroot, and maybe parsnips. Peas to eat and sweet peas for flowers because they smell so nice!   Probably some winter lettuce, and definitely broccoli and cauliflower. If I can grow all that, I will be pleased.

  God Bless,


Tuesday, 10 April 2012


What a weekend we have had in our busy household. Easter celebrations and a birthday!

 I love easter, seeing the excited faces of my little ones as they come out first thing on easter morning and see their chocolate bunny sitting on the table. I love seeing their little bodies wiggle in anticipation of the easter egg hunt. But most of all I love reading the easter story. On Good Friday, reading how Jesus died on the cross for us so that we could go to heaven to live with him, and on Easter Sunday, reading how He came back to life.

 This year, as an added extra to our celebrations, the children made easter hats. (Actually, I made the hats, they just decorated them!)

  We also had a birthday this weekend. In the middle of all the easter hoohaa  Nicholas turned six!

    Blowing out the candles!

 What a blessed weekend.

  God Bless,


Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Our Days

Today. Our lives are full of Todays. Days that are full of ordinary happenings... getting up, making up beds (or washing sheets because your 5 year old wet the bed!), getting meals for hungry tummies, both old and young, sweeping the floor for the 3rd time because you served rice and we all know how that spills all over the floor :)

But Today is also full of cuddles and kisses from both young and old,  questions and wonderings, and bunches of flowers from fat little hands.

  I have been reading the book of Ecclesiastes of late, and it has reminded me that our lives are a gift from God, and we are to enjoy our days, especially the ordinary ones, because gifts are meant to be enjoyed.

  Have a lovely day,


Friday, 6 January 2012


Summer is such a beautiful season, and bountiful too. This morning, the children and I helped Andrew in the garden. First we shucked corn, we had 40 cobs from about 30 plants. These are now in the freezer ready to be boiled and buttered  for future dinners.

  We then pulled the french beans out of the ground, and Emily and Nicholas went over them to get the last of the beans off. Just enough for dinner! The calendulas have finished flowering, so we picked the last flower heads for soap making. I made some calendula cream last week, but it smelt so bad, that nobody will want to use it. I really need to find a better recipe!


God bless,