Sunny Side Up Sunday and Happy Easter for 2019

Hello Dear Reader,

I would like to wish all my lovely readers a very happy Easter, spent with family and friends, if you have to travel, I hope you stay safe on the roads and that sometime today you have a chance to rest and reflect.

I started doing this weekly post a couple of years ago to highlight the, mostly, simple things I am grateful for on a weekly basis. Today is no different, the simple thing that I am grateful for today is rain. We've had a few days of heavy showers, which is probably not ideal for everyone that is away camping, this Easter long weekend, but to me it is pure joy.

Yesterday I went and selected a few herbs to start the garden off and today they will be going into really wet, fertile soil, so they should jump out of the ground. All of our tanks are overflowing!

What are you grateful for today?

Have a lovely Easter Sunday,

One Year Ago-What we bought, spent and ate this week
Two Years Ago-This Weeks 5 Frugal Things on a Friday
Three Years Ago-A Walk Around the Garden

What we bought, spent and ate this week

Hello Dear Reader,

I hope everyone is enjoying the Easter break and have been able to or are planning on spending time with the people you love most in the world. Yesterday, we had a delicious lunch with our Son, his Partner and her immediate Family, we all did a bit and lunch came together easily and without stress, just the way it should be.

I knew we wouldn't feel like eating dinner after such a large lunch but I went ahead and made this tuna pasta bake as I wanted to take some up to my sister last night. She invited me to an Easter service with her faith, along with my Niece and Grand Nieces, it was lovely to all be together.

It had been raining on and off all day, which was such a blessing, however, mother nature saved the heaviest downpour for my 30 minute drive home late last night! I drove though the heaviest rain I have ever had to drive in, the rain was coming in horizontal and I had to slow down to a crawl so I could see where I was going. Thankfully during the heaviest rain I was on a familiar road and was able to navigate home safely.

It took me a while to wind down last night so I was quite late into bed, I've had a bit of a sleep in this morning and have a few jobs to do today so I better get a wriggle on.

Here's we bought, spent and ate this week-

What we bought

The Aldi Shop

F & V from Northside Discount Fruit Barn

10 KG's of White Bread Flour from the Northside Discount Fruit Barn, it was only $13.49 

What we spent
Northside Discount Fruit Barn-$42.04
Coles-Not Pictured-Coles Own Brand Smoked Salmon, 100 grams-$8.00


What we ate

Sunday, Monday and Tuesday-Jamie's Chilli Con Carne

Wednesday-Honey Prawns with steamed Basmati rice and Choy Sum

Thursday-Baked Beans on Toast

What are you up to today?

Have a lovely day,

Three Years Ago-What we ate this week

This Weeks 5 Frugal Things on a Friday Plus My Favourite Easter Recipes

Hello Dear Reader,

And just like that the Easter break is upon us. I am so looking forward to the little break, not travelling too far, mostly staying at home and cooking, baking, gardening and quilting. I need to go up to the bulk store on Saturday which means going on the highway, so I am hoping that everyone is already at where they want to be by midmorning Saturday, so the traffic won't be too bad.

Along with today's usual 5 frugal things I am going to link some of my favourite Easter recipes, it is always fun for me to look back on some terrific recipes that sometimes let lost and forgotten in the archives.

Here's what I got up to on the frugal front-

1. Made a batch of Thick and Creamy Vanilla Yoghurt using some starter that I saved from the last batch. I now freeze 100 grams of yoghurt when I make a new batch of yoghurt, the texture of the frozen and defrosted started is thinner but it still works.

2. Bought a 10 KG bag of bread flour from the Northside Discount Fruit Barn, it cost $13.49=$1.34 per kilo. That is much cheaper than the bulk store I go to, their's is $3.20 per KG. 

3. Made another light wholemeal loaf

4. Turned the glass bottle of glycerine up-side down to get every last drop out when making another batch of homemade toothpaste. I make our toothpaste to stop another plastic tube from going to landfill. If you are interested you can find the recipe is here.

5. Made a big batch of Jamie's Chilli Con Carne, it was so delicious and it did us for 3 nights dinners on the run. It was heavenly not to have to make dinner every night. I simply made a double batch of this recipe, it is full of pulses and veggies and make 500 grams of beef mince go a very long way. Cook once and eat thrice! Love it

Our Goals for 2019, How's it Going?

Hello Dear Reader,

I posted our goals for 2019 here and so far so good. I like to have goals written down as if I don't, they just stay an idea in my brain. Writing a list makes it more concrete and makes me want to act on them.

I write short and long term goals that mainly centre around improving the quality of our lives, our little families lives and our home.

1. Walk and ride every day

-I have walked the little dogs every single day, they wouldn't let me get away with not walking, twice a day. They know the time too, 6am in the morning and 5.30pm in the afternoon. The morning walk isn't that long only about 15-20 minutes but the afternoon walk is a longer 30 minutes walk. In total, the two walks add up to 2.9 km per day

-I did start riding to work in early January but soon found it way too hot, even up until late March, the heat was unbearable. But good news, I have been riding everyday to work for the last 3 weeks and I also rode down to my hairdresser a few Saturdays ago. I am starting to feel fitter and stronger and my clothes don't feel quite so tight on me.

2. Buy only free range meat

-Yes we have achieved this goal so far. We found a little butcher over the bridge called Jason's Quality Meats, his meat is all free range and is excellent quality. It does have a price to match the quality and the fact that it is free range but we find we are buying and eating less meat.

3. Plant out our veggie garden in March

-Nope not yet, I am hoping to buy some seedlings this Saturday and get them in the garden on Sunday. We removed the last of the pumpkins and spent vines last week. The largest pumpkin weighted 7 KG!

4. Finish Ninja's (our little black cat) side of the house with rock wall gabion cages and a cat friendly garden on either end of the gabion cages.

-Again this project had been shifted to later in the year due to the heat. Hopefully starting it soon

5. Fit out the house with new plantation shutters

-Yes, this big project was ticked off in January. It was a big expense but so worth it, it has freshened the whole home up.

6. Go camping twice in the cooler months (May and August)

-We are booked to go camping in early May up the beach

7. Have a family lunch once a month

-We got together in January and February but our Aunt was in hospital for most of March so it didn't go ahead during that month. We are having a few little get togethers for Easter and we will pop over to see our Aunt who is home at last.

8. Support our adult children and their partners as much as possible with their plans for this year

-Our daughter has been down twice since January and her Partner stayed with us once. He is coming down again to finalise some house business in May so he'll stay with us again then.

-Our son and parter next door to us have not started their home projects as yet, they are waiting for a very good friend of theirs to have a lull in his business so he can start on theirs.

9. Finish Milly's Quilt and start one for Tilly

-I finished Milly's quilt and have finished all the cutting out for Tilly's quilt. I just now need to get a wriggle on with hers. There just isn't enough time in the day.

10. Install an irrigation system for the new raised garden beds-this one is already started 

-Done and done, it works like a charm, now I just need to plant out the gardens

11. Install another water tank, late last year we ran out of water, I don't want that to happen again

-We went the whole hog and installed four 2500 litre water tanks, we are now drought proof

12. Start getting quotes and ideas for re-vamping the bathrooms and toilets.

-Have not started this one yet. We don't want to spend a fortune but we do want to remodel the existing bathrooms so they are easier care. The main thing I would like is to remove the glass panels, cleaning the glass shower panels is the job I hate the most.

How are your goals for this year going?

Have a lovely day,

One Year Ago-So Disheartened 
Two Years Ago-Any Leftover Hot Cross Buns?
Three Years Ago-Almond, Cinnamon and Walnut Cake

Fruit and Veggie Shopping

Hello Dear Reader,

As Lovely Hubby does the shopping most weeks, I don't get to see the grocery shops very often, however last week LH and son were away on a fishing trip and our daughter was using my car for work, up until Saturday evening, when I dropped her off to the airport. So that left Sunday for me to do the grocery shop for the week ahead.

I have to say it's been a while since I saw the Northside Discount Fruit Barn and I was very impressed by the quality, cleanliness and overall display of the huge variety of fruit, veg, deli and grocery items that they stock. I did ask at the register if it had changed management but the young girl said no, that it was still the same owners. It was quite early on Sunday morning when I went and everything was displayed beautifully.

They have a huge outdoor section where the really good specials are, they sell a lot of produce in random weighted, plastic bag lined, buckets which really are such good value especially if you have a large family. As we don't need that much fruit I opt to buy just what we need for the week ahead. The prices inside are still cheaper and the produce fresher than our local supermarkets. Yes, I could have paid 99 cents per kilo for a big bucket of bananas but I know I would have had to use a lot of them up in baking so I preferred to pay the $3.95 per kilo for just 5 bananas for out weekday fruit salad and muesli breakfasts.

There is a lot of pre-packaged and plastic wrapped produce often sold in larger quantities but there is also a lot of produce sold without packaging so that is what I go for. Apart from all the fruit and veg available there is a huge selection of dried fruit, nuts, seeds and pulses all at very good prices.

This is what I came away with, no plastic in sight

I took a few videos to show off this great little business-

Do you have something similar where you live?

Have a lovely day,

One Year Ago-Future Plans for the Garden and Here and Now 8
Two Years Ago-Here and Now 1
Three Years Ago-Slow Cooker, Red Wine, Beef and Mushroom Cassoulet

Busy Bees

Hello Dear Reader,

Just a quick little post today. Last Wednesday our Native Bee Hive was split, so we now have 2 hives in our little garden. I was a little worried as I hadn't seen much activity around the hives however on Sunday morning I was relieved to see these busy bees-

Have a lovely day,

One Year Ago-Quinoa, Cranberry and Roast Almond Salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette
Two Years Ago-Happy Easter 2017
Three Years Ago-Curried Sweet Potato Soup

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