Thursday, May 20

Yay for Sporadic Blogging...

Hmm. I don't know how people who blog every day get around to it! I'm much too busy knitting and watching Star Trek :D

At the moment I'm streaming an episode of Voyager, the one after Seven of Nine turns up ('The Gift') because even though Original Series is still my fave (mmm, Spock) I find the Borg absolutely fascinating, and Seven of Nine is hot ;) I've also been reading some very interesting Kirk/Spock fanfic :D

As far as knitting goes, I'm knitting up a stash of beanies with the plan of starting an Etsy shop. The one I'm currently doing is hot pink and black stripes...

My Anti-Consumerism Challenge is going alright. I've bought two new items of clothing so far this year- a t-shirt for me (big fail, it was a Star Trek t-shirt and I really wanted it! It is very cool though, which totally makes up for it :P) and a snuggly pyjama suit for Malachi, which I bought new because I was having no luck at all finding a second hand one in size 4. I've also bought a new pair of shoes for each of us, but I wasn't counting shoes when I wrote the original rules.

I've failed on the takeaway rule, we've had Subway a few times when we've been out late or I've been feeling too crap to cook. I think I'll relax on that rule, and say no more than once every two weeks.

I get fruit and veg at the fruit shop when it's open, but I've given up on the markets for a main source of produce for now. Usually when I need stuff it's not market day and it can be too expensive, and not very reliable as to what'll be there each weekend.

I'm still menu planning, and have come in under budget for groceries each month- Feb was $313.75, March was $335.61, and April was just under at $348.78. This month is looking good :D

Tuesday, February 2

I Love Op-Shops!

We have a brilliant Salvos shop here! It's sort-of behind the Salvation Army church in a shed, and is only open a few days a week, but I find so much excellent stuff there :D
I was after some new shorts for Malachi today and ended up with three pairs, plus a skirt for me (requiring minor alterations), a damn funky rainbow striped hat for Zara, and that '4 Ingredients' book, all for $5.40. Woo hoo!!
I'd take a pic but my camera batteries are dead and I haven't gotten around to buying new ones. I wish I had rechargeable one like my mum's new one. Oh well!

My Anti-Consumerism challenge is going well :) In the first month, the only point I failed on was 'no convenience food'... being out at the shops with hungry small people and no enough food led me to buy something quick for them to eat a few times. Better planning will avoid this!

My grocery budget is $350/month, and I'm happy to say that January came in at $306.89. We'll see how next month goes... the '4 Ingredients' book might help there :)

Here's a recipe that's been brilliant this month for saving money, and sooo yummy too. My small people both love it.

Honey Baked Lentils

1 cup dried green/brown lentils
2.5 cups water or stock
2 Tbs honey
2 Tbs tamari or soy sauce (kecap manis works well)
2 Tbs olive oil
1 medium brown onion, diced
Knob of ginger to taste, crushed
2 big cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp each cumin & chilli powder (I left the chilli out)

Bake in covered dish 160 degrees for 1.5 hours. Serve with rice. Easy as!

Saturday, January 23

Yay for Garage Sales

I've been looking for a desk, cos I'm planning to get into some study later this year, and decided to go garage-saleing this morning. There were only two garage sales on (oh the joy of living in a small town) but I went to both, and got TWO desks and a bookshelf, all for $18. The first desk I have yet to pick up, as it was too big for my car, but here are my other two scores:

These were $4 each, the other desk is bigger and was $10.

I love garage sales :D Next project: find a couch?

Saturday, January 16

ACC Day One- Farmers' Markets and a Handmade Gift

So today was the first official day of my anti-consumerism challenge. I needed to do grocery shopping and the local farmers' markets were on, so I got what I could there (which wasn't much, they are very small markets!) I was happy with some things- big pile of stonefruit for $6, local free range eggs for $4.80- but was very not happy about being charged $9 for a bunch of parsley, a small bag of beans and a bunch of bok choy... possibly getting vegetables at the market isn't quite within the budget at the moment.
The fruit and veg shop (yes, the only one in the whole town) is closed for the owners to have their holiday at the moment, so we had to do the rest of the shopping at the supermarket. I spent $90.09 there, plus $19.80 at the market, so $109.89 for a shopping which should last us the best part of two weeks, not including fruit top-ups and the like. Not bad I reckon!

The issue of handmade gifts has come up quickly, as one of Malachi's friends is having a fourth birthday party tomorrow. I came up with an idea for a present this afternoon, and made it tonight.

It's a little wall hanging with a appliqued truck on it, a ribbon border and (a bit hard to see in the photo) the child's name down the bottom. I think it's cool :)

Friday, January 15

Anti-Consumerism Challenge 2010

Well... I haven't done anything on here for about 6 months, but over at Joyous Birth some of us are doing and anti-consumerism challenge. Good opportunity to get back into the blogging!

The particular thread can be found here.

So here are my rules:

  • No new clothes - homemade, op-shopped or swapped.
  • Handmade, secondhand or local produce for presents only.
  • No impulse buying- find things secondhand or wait a month before buying new.
  • No takeaway or convenience food.
  • Shop at the fruit & veg shop before woolworths.
  • Buy produce at the markets.
  • No new material or yarn unless needed for clothes or presents and cannot be found secondhand.
  • Menu planning, which I do already do, and sticking to monthly grocery budget, which I mostly do.
The local farmers' markets are on tomorrow, so I'm off to buy some fruit & veg- after doing my menu plan of course.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, July 30

Rainbow Beanie Pattern

Righty-o, haven't posted on here for ages!

I've just finished this rainbow beanie for Malachi, and thought I'd share the pattern :)


3.25 mm double pointed needles
4mm double pointed needles

7 colours double knit yarn (lavender, dark blue, light blue, green, yellow, pink, red)

This is for the 2-4 years size (52cm)

Using 3.25 mm needles, cast on 104 sts in lavender

Round1- P, K, repeat til end.
R2-10- same as R1.

Switch to 4mm needles
Switch to dark blue

R11- Knit
R12- 32- same as R11

Switch to lavender

R33- Knit
R34-36- Purl

Switch to light blue

R37-39- Knit
R40- Knit 11, knit 2 together, repeat til end (96 sts)
R41-46- Knit
R47- Knit 10, k2tog, repeat (88 sts)

Switch to lavender

R48- Knit
R49-51- Purl

Switch to green

R52-53- Knit
R54- Knit 9, k2tog, repeat (80 sts)
R55-60- Knit
R61- Knit 8, k2tog, repeat (72 sts)
R62-66- Knit
R67- Knit 7, k2tog, repeat (64 sts)
R68-73- Knit
R74- Knit 6, k2tog, repeat (56 sts)

Switch to lavender

R75- Knit
R76-78- Purl

Switch to yellow

R79- Knit 5, k2tog, repeat (48 sts)
R80-84- Knit
R85- Knit 4, k2tog, repeat (40 sts)
R86-90- Knit
R91- Knit 3, k2tog, repeat (32 sts)

Switch to lavender

R92- Knit
R93-95- Purl

Switch to pink

R96-97- Knit
R98- Knit 2, k2tog, repeat (24 sts)
R99-104- Knit
R105- Knit 1, k2tog, repeat (16)

Switch to lavender

R106- Knit
R107-109- Purl

Switch to red

R110-112- Knit
R113- K2tog on all sts (8 sts)

Now work approx 10-12 cm on these 8 sts (long enough to tie a knot in)

Thread yarn through the 8 sts into the inside of the beanie, pull tight, break off yarn. Tie knot in stem. Sew in ends etc.

Adapted from 'Checkheaton- Handknits to Wrap and Adorn'

Sunday, April 12

Natural Remedy for Impetigo (School Sores)

We've had impetigo in our household in the last little while, and I want to share the natural products we've used to combat it.

DH's daughter, E (6yo) visits in the school holidays. In the last few days of her christmas holiday visit, we noticed what looked like a large pimple on her bum, which had been rubbed by her clothes and was raw. I put a band-aid on it, to try and stop in rubbing any more, which didn't seem to help. Then she went home, and we let her mother know about it. She rang DH a few days later and told him that it was impetigo, and that E was now on antibiotics for it.

Maybe two weeks later, two sores appeared on DH's leg, and a few weeks after that, Malachi started getting them on his chin.

After doing a bit of googling, I decided to try a combination of Goldenseal ointment, olive leaf extract and extra vitamin C.

Twice a day, Malachi had the Goldenseal thickly applied to the sores, and took 5mL of olive leaf extract (which he said was yuck, but took anyway) and 250mg of vitamin C. When we started, there were a few large sores at the scabby stage, and more little ones coming up. Within a week, the scabby ones were unscabbed and shrinking, and the little ones didn't get any bigger. Within two-three weeks, they were just red spots. (We continued with the routine until they were totally gone).

A few weeks later (while Malachi's sores were still at the red spot stage), Zara had some sores appearing on her legs. Because she is smaller, she had two mL of olive leaf extract (and she also takes it fine) and 125mg of vitamin C- a quarter of the tablet- and I took the other quarter to give her more vit C through my milk. Zara's are still at the red spot stage.

Meanwhile, E had a few courses of antibiotics to deal with hers, and they took a lot longer to clear up than Malachi's and Zara's.

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