Thursday, December 26, 2013


Merry Christmas.  Like most people I'm always amazed how quickly the day passes in comparison to the build up.  Buying for the boys was difficult this year now they earn their own money.  They'd already bought the new t-shirts, shorts, jeans that they wanted so that took a fair bit off my shopping list.  I was a bit concerned about my choices but as the youngest headed off to bed he assured me that I "delivered the goods" again this year.  High praise.

We had a lovely day sharing both lunch and dinner with my family.  Younger members of the family came and went depending on what their plans were and as neither of my boys have girlfriends we were lucky enough that they spent the whole day with us. 

I received lots of wonderful presents but my sister surprised me with the absolute best ever.  To use that awful cliché, "something that money can't buy".    I sooked when she gave it to me and when I wasn't sooking all I managed was "my donkey"...

Isn't he gorgeous.  I was given Donkey as a gift when we left England to emigrate to Australia.  Donkey would be 47 years old now and he's looking pretty good.  He's missing one of his little vinyl white teeth and he did have a red vinyl saddle, bridle and hoof covers but other than that he's all present and accounted for. 

We tried to work out how my sister had him and finally recalled that I gave him to my nephew when he was born.  At some stage my sister packed him away and recently rediscovered him and best of all gave him back to me.  So reunited I am, not only with a little grey donkey but with memories from my childhood.  A perfect gift.

I hope you had a magical Christmas too.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Copy cat - attempt number 2

My husband is housebound at the moment with fractured ribs.  So under  the guise of taking him out for a drive I went in search of greenery for my second attempt to replicate something I have pinned.

I slipped my secateurs into my handbag and off we went.  We live in the hills so there are plenty of dirt roads that have pine trees along them.  I felt like a naughty child pulling off to the side of the road, glancing around making sure no one was watching while I cut some greenery.  Fortunately it was cool weather because living in an area vulnerable to bush fires in summer I'm sure someone would of reported my car for suspiciously loitering if it had been a total fire ban day.  Just for good measure I gathered some pine cones off the ground as well because we all know how Christmassy they are with the added benefit of being great in the wood fire in winter.

The first photo is from Pinterest and the second is my sad attempt.


Wellll I tried.. My excuses are I didn't have the same greenery or ornaments and probably not a good idea to take a photo of greenery against a green backdrop.  But hey, it's done and it's on the table outside sparkling in the sunlight.  I think my mantra may well have to be "If at first you don't succeed, try again..." 

Back to the kitchen for me, I've plenty of desserts to make for Christmas Day.  This I can do.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

"Pin it"

Do you pin?  I do.  I probably spend too much time using the "pin it" button on Pinterest.

As a child I had big scrap books which I use to love sticking pictures into and when people ask me what Pinterest is that's how I explain it....a big girl's version of a scrap book.

I pin lots of things with the intention of actually creating something similar at home.  Christmas decorating ideas are high on the list of pins to duplicate in my house but with  Christmas a mere 3 sleeps away I hadn't done one of them until 10 minutes ago.

Such a simple idea that took me all of 5 minutes.

The first photo is from Pinterest.

And this one is mine.

And that is about as creative as this girl gets.  Although my goal for 2014 is to try some of the craft things I keep saving to my big girl's scrapbook. 

Stay tuned but don't hold your breath....

Monday, December 16, 2013

Best book 2013

I read some great books this year but for me the best one that I've read is "the fast diet" by Dr Michael Mosley and Mimi Spencer.

My sister told me about it and lent me her book.  In late May I thought I would give it a go, especially as it involved no exercise and besides weight loss there were other health benefits. 
The basic idea is that 2 days a week you limit your calorie intake to 500 calories (600 for men) and you also do a 12 hour fast during the days you have chosen.  I liked the idea that it was only 2 days a week and that for the other 5 you could eat normally because I do enjoy eating. 
The 12 hour fast is meant to trigger your body's ability to look after it's self as it sees the lack of food as a famine.  Anti aging abilities kick in as well the body's ability to repair itself.  Sounds good...but for me the biggest benefit was the repair work to the brain. 
My mother in law lived with us for several months while we waited for a place in an aged care home.  We got to experience dementia first cruel.  Listening to her splash water around the bathroom instead of washing as she doesn't know that's what she was meant to be doing.  Not using the toilet, roaming the house at 2 am, randomly appearing next to our bed and turning on the light to look at us.  Eating, not eating, feeding her lunch to the dog because she doesn't know what else to do with it.  And the worse was showering her while she screamed and tried to grab on to me because she had no idea what I was trying to do.  It was like having a toddler in the house but one that wasn't learning anything she was just lost...
Soooo when I read that there was a link between fasting and delaying things like dementia I was ready to try it.  There was also evidence that fasting may also "lower your risk to a range of diseases, including diabetes, heart disease and cancer".
My husband was sceptical as he knows how much I love food but to his surprise (and mine) I managed to do it...yay...I lost 11 kilos in 6 months and it's changed my eating habits.  I now eat appropriately for my height, age and lifestyle and not the same as the boys (young men with very physical jobs) need to eat.  I also stop eating when I'm full, you don't need to finish every on your plate.  When I don't listen to my stomach I really regret it.
Does this mean I have no fun at meal no no.  To be perfectly honest I've just had chocolate before breakfast and I still have dessert, ice creams and cake just not all the time.
If you want to read more about it here's the link.  I definitely think it's worth reading the book but you can get the gist from the website. 
Cheers, Judith

Saturday, August 17, 2013


I don't know about you but I love Pinterest.  I try and limit myself to just a little bit at a time but we all know what happens to good intentions and before I know more time than intended has passed.
I've lots of pretty pictures, decorating ideas, homes and interiors  and all sorts of "other stuff".  I've also saved recipes, craft ideas and things to do for health, beauty and well being.  So far apart from going to have a look at them every so often I've done nothing else with them...until the other night.
I have bare feet for work everyday so decided that I might try one of the foot spas to make my feet smooth ...
This one sounded good so I bought the blue listerine as suggested and already had the vinegar and warm water.  I read a little of my book, The Night Circus, while my feet were soaking and after the prescribed amount of time removed them to find my feet mildly smoother but definitely a beautiful blue colour.
I scrubbed and rubbed and rubbed and scrubbed but the best I could achieve was a paler toenails absorbed more colour than my skin.
Such a great look for work but fortunately after another extended scrub in the shower the next morning my skin turned back to normal and I just painted over my blue nails with nail varnish.
Of course I did get a few smurf comments from family and friends via facebook and text message but as tempting as it was to follow one friend's advice of soaking them in bleach, I resisted.
So glad that it was a foot soak idea and not something to put on my face. 


Thursday, June 20, 2013

Just like a pair of fluffy slippers

Today the planets aligned and I had a cuppa with a lovely friend.
It was wonderful to have a catch up with her and her youngest child who was home from Kindy.
I got to chat, meet the new chickens, the bunnies, wander
around her garden and I bought home some artwork for my fridge.

But what's this got to do with fluffy's simple...
her friendship is warm and comfortable
just like wearing my fluffy slippers.

You're a gorgeous lady Suzanne and I wish I saw you more often.


Friday, June 14, 2013

Worth a read

There was much hype around here about the release of local author, Hannah Kent's first book, "Burial Rites".  The book was originally written as part of her Ph.D. and then reworked for the Writing Australia Unpublished Manuscript Award in 2011.  Hannah was the inaugural winner of this award and the book was recently released here.

I must admit when the book was shown to me at bookclub as the next read, I was a bit ho hum about it and consequently left it until the last fact I had to finish the last pages at bookclub. 

It took me awhile to get "into it" but once I was there it was one of those "I'll just read 10 more pages and then I'll cook tea, hang up the washing etc".  One of those book where I could visualise the story that I was reading.  One of those books that you hope, regardless of reading the blurb, that the ending will be different. 

In a nutshell the book is based on a true story about Agnes Magnusdottir, the last woman executed in Iceland, in 1830 and the people who come into her life. 

What a shame for me that I had to hurry reading it and didn't have the time to savour the words and the story. 

Have a happy weekend.  My boys aren't playing sport this weekend so I'll be by the fire reading the next book for bookclub - no last minute reading this time.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Chicken sitting...

At the moment I'm chicken sitting while my friend is away.  There are just 2 girls who free range all day and usually get put into their extremely spacious chicken coop at night.  As my friend didn't want me to be feel obliged to visit twice a day, the girls have been left to the put themselves to bed at night.
I must admit to visiting them probably more often than my friend thought I would but as we seem to head out that way a fair bit it hasn't taken much to stop by. 
I usually compost our food scraps but it seems to be such a better use to take them out to the girls.  All it takes is a tap tap tap on the side of the container and they come running, well I'm sure you could even call it sprinting.  On the few days that we haven't dropped past, when we next go out there I'm positive those girls tell me off...such clucking you've never heard. 
One of the girls was extremely adventurous this morning and as I drove down their road I saw her on the wrong side of the fence, playing chicken near the road.  I wasn't sure what she'd do once I got close but thank goodness for the container of scraps because as soon as I started tapping she started running behind me.
Obviously the bugs on that side of the fence must of been pretty juicy because no soon had she eaten some of the scraps than back out she went and taking her sister with her.  Fortunately they got sprung and after a quick look around I found some more wire and covered their escape route.
These are 2 chickens that won't be crossing the road...

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