Tuesday, January 31, 2012

No Spend February

I've been thinking that I've been guilty of unconscious spending of late and I need to take a bit more care when it comes to my disposable income.  Way to do that?  No spend challenge for the month of February, and no it's not because it's a shorter month it's just that it starts tomorrow and there is no time like the present!!!
Now when I say no spend I don't mean at all.  Obviously bills still need to be paid; power, phone, internet, groceries, petrol, rent etc.  What I want to eliminate is the impulse spending that adds up quickly.  The magazine with one interesting story that catches your eye at the checkout, the treat coffees just because I felt like it, takeaways and my achilles heel - Trade Me!
I'll let you know how I get on.  The first few days should be quite good as we are heading to the family crib, miles from anywhere, for a few days.  No electricity apart from generator, no TV, internet, cell coverage.  BLISS.
I'll master the coal range this time.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Starting the Wee Wipes revolution

Ok so I posted in another post about my miscarriage earlier this month.  I am know in a physical start to resume using my cloth wee wipes and I can't wait.
I challenge all my readers who are currently not using wee wipes to find an old soft towel, an old flat nappy or similar and try it out.  Have a small container in your toilet to keep clean ones, and somewhere to put the used ones.
Now some WWW (Wee Wipes Women) will rinse and reuse but I have not progressed to that yet. 

So give it a go, feel the difference, save some money and toilet paper, and be kinder to the environment.

Just to clarify for newbies wee wipes are just used for wee/number 1's/pee/urine.  NOT number 2's!  They do not need to be soaked, or put in laundry soaker.

Get creative and find some funky patterned material.  Check out the net.  There are some awesome sites that talk about wee wipes and/or sell them.

Let me know how you get on.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Toilet Paper; it's not just the packaging!

While the company behind Paseo toilet paper and facial tissues claims to be supplying a premium environmentally sound product, it is not in labelled recyclable packaging, and it appears the source of the paper is in question too. 

Greenpeace has openly named Asia Pulp and Paper (APP), which supplies the paper for Paseo products, and also Cottonsoft, as being involved in rainforest deforestation.
For more information, or to show your support for the Greenpeace cause click here.

Many Pulp and paper companies bandy around different certifications claiming they lesson their environmental impact.  I'll let you do some research and make your own decision on that one.  Vote at the supermarket.

Check out Green Living Tips for more on Toilet paper and the impact on the environment.

Perhaps we should start a Wee wipes revolution ..........

Jammin.... and Preservin

Summer fruit means dusting off the preserving jars and stocking up on sugar.
So far I have 9 jars of plums and 7 jars of apricots preserved and 6 jars of raspberry jam, and 3 of apricots done.
There are still more plums on the tree so I need to get out there but the rain has put a spanner in the works.  Hopefully they don't split now with the dampness.

The jam looks great and the fruit has all come up pretty well too.  Talk about having your hands full though with a pot of boiling water to sterilise jars, the oven on as a secondary sterilisation, syrup bubbling away, and the lids boiling.  It sure is hot and not a place for a young child!  The end result is worth it though and in the middle of winter some plums or apricots will be a lovely treat.

Considering the start to the year I am pleased with progress on the fill the pantry plan.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Dusting off the jam pot

We went raspberry picking on Sunday, and while it would be delicious to eat all 5kg we brought home I have filled some jam jars instead.  They were beautiful raspberries from the Waitaki Valley.  Large, juicy and very very good.

North Otago Raspberries

1.9kg of fruit made 8 good sized jars of bright red jam.  Makes me want to make some scones right now!

To do list;
Pick and process (jam, preserve) plums over next couple of weeks
WEED, WEED and WEED garden
Help hubby chop firewood which arrived yesterday
Play with Miss A over the holidays
Plan family holiday

Monday, January 16, 2012

Big changes

I can't believe it has been so long since I have posted.  Here is a brief run down on what has happened with my family since September.
1.  We have sold our house.  Finally, after 15 months it sold.  Very easily in the end.  Initially we had to move out by the end of October, but fortunately that changed.  We are still renting the house of the new owner.
2. I got pregnant. It was planned but perhaps not the best timing.
3. My 3 hens were killed by a wandering dog.  Less said the better here, but it still annoys me some people with dogs can't be more responsible.
4. Christmas and New Year craziness
5. I lost the baby last week and so I am back looking for a little focus in my life.

The garden is looking good.  We had 50mls of rain in less than 24 hours over Thurs/Fri of last week which has set the garden and local farms up for the rest of summer.
We have been eating broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, peas, rhubarb and currants out of the garden.  The plum tree (which I will sadly miss when we finally move) is heaving with fruit and I have been sneaking down for the odd one.  Not fully ready but not far away.
I've stocked up on sugar and preserving lids ready for the onslaught.  Will be good to fill the preserving jars again.

Dublin Bay is in full glory as I look out the window.  Nature certainly heals you when you are low.

Taking deep breaths - what I breath out is what trees breath in; what I breath in is what trees breath out.