Saturday, September 13, 2008

Just a quick update

One of the reasons I haven't been blogging as much, is it's been one of those weeks where a lot of things happened, but nothing completed. So I've decided to add a new label which I'll call, "Quick bits". This is just to summarise a few things I've been up to lately...

I've decided to do some propagating. Something I'll get in to more seriously soon, but at this stage I'm just experimenting with the easy strikes to take.

I'm using two shelves of my greenhouse at the moment, as the lower two have excessive sun exposure. I've got some natives in there which I'm surprised haven't died on me yet.

These are the pepino cuttings a member from Earthgarden gave me, which are also doing well. In the background are a couple of yellow federation daisies.

I also divided up some pygmy grass which I won't show pictures of yet, as I had to cut their leaves off. I've got four clumps planted around the front of my rainwater tank now. When they grow their burgundy foliage back, they should soften the look of the tank nicely. No reason why a boring old poly-tank shouldn't get some extra garden attention too.

I also gave our neighbours their first carton of eggs today. Not a bad effort for only 5 small pekins. Sadly our neighbours recently put their house on the market. I suppose that's the way it goes. I'm sure whoever moves in will love it, as they've done so much work.

Dave and I have also decided to be more creative with our debt thinking. He needs a job with better work conditions because time at home is something we don't have. It's a sad reality that many workers spend more time at work than at home. We've toyed with the idea of downsizing, so Dave can get a less demanding job. But as much as I like the idea of having less debt...we also have to be realistic about where we are in life and how expensive change actually is.

Selling is an expensive exercise. So is moving. Dave would still have to work his job to pay for the mortgage, so where would he find the extra time to organise it all? Then there's relocating our daughter to another school - buying another uniform, etc. The reality is that we are in a cycle in our life, demanding time and financial outlay. We just have to be more creative with how we plan our expenditures at present.

It's a difficult time for us. We're standing on the edge of a cliff where we can either jump to the other side, or fall to our demise in doing so. Facing the expanse - the void - brings the uncertainty of whether we can make it.

So we're rolling up our sleeves and getting creative with our options. We want to stay here and we want to make it work. I'll report back with any headway we make on new strategies.

In the meantime, it's a joy to potter around the yard and dreaming of dreams for my family. The kinds of stuff involving dirt, compost and a good harvest for the season.


  1. The cuttings are looking good.
    Did you use a hormone on them? Two cheaper options instead of the store brought stuff (which is artifical anyway) is to use honey or else soak willow branches cutting in boiling water you can find instructions here

    You sound as though your family is at a difficult point in time. I hope you don't mind if I share some websites that have helped us with day-to-day living, especially whilist we are on an apprentice wage.
    You may have seen these before but there some excellent hints and heaps of wonderful people to help with advice at also Rhonda at Down to earth has some good tips too

    Goodluck with your decisions, just remember that lots of little steps will eventually equal big steps ;-)

  2. Wow, you're on an apprentice wage and managing to do everything you do? That's pretty good. When Dave and I first met, he was finishing his chef apprenticeship, so I know the money isn't that great.

    Thanks for the link to make rooting tonic. I didn't use anything but a quality potting mix with seasol in it. I will have to give the rooting tonic a try, to see if it works better.

    I love Rhonda's down-to-earth blog. Yep, I read it too. I'm thinking of making my own laundry liquid soon. I'm glad we purchased the front-loading washing machine before we moved here, as our use of liquid has dropped enormously.

    Thanks for the encouragement and links - it all helps. Little steps. :)

  3. Rhonda is great I first met her when she was on ALS. I make her washing gel/ liquid but have changed it to 1 bar of sunlight soap and one bar of sards soap. It helps with the stains abit but tough stains can be tricky to get rid of. So I always use a napisan inwash treatment (I wait til it is on special for $5.00 and buy 4 or 5 ;-)) Whites also never stay white, but I would be mad to dress my grubby boys in white or any colour close to it lol.
    It works great in a front loader, we have one too.

    Tony is on his third year now so we have a bit more money, but we have to be very thrifty with what we spend it on. (He gets overtime pay now too thank goodness!) We budget constantly but had a good reminder this fortnight when it was 9 days until payday and we had $50 left after paying all the bills, filling the car and buying food!
    Hmm maybe I didn't need all those plants....

    Lots of Rhondas tips have helped us, stock piling, homemade goods and reusing. I try to do one new thrifty thing a week, that way it is not too much to remember. Also ALS has so much I can't keep up with all the ideas!

    A recent one is to use cloth pieces instead of toilet paper?

  4. One thrifty idea a week is a good way to start practicing. I should impliment something like that too.

    We only shop once a fortnight now, instead of weekly shops. We're buying local fruit and vege, have also cut biscuits out of the shopping list, as I bake them now.

    But it's so easy to blow-out! Spring is a compulsory time to buy plants and the coop is slowly adding up.

    I look at these purchases as investments in our house and lives though. I just have to make sure I can stop and save too!


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