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I'll Talk to You Soon

Sunday, 28 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

This morning we are leaving for camping up at our special place for a week. I won't be able to blog as there just isn't any internet coverage there. So, just like last time we camped, I will be having a break from blogging. Our days on the beach have a lovely rhythm to them, up early, breakfast, get ready for the day and then fish and walk the beach all day till about 4pm, then its back to camp for a shower and an early dinner and bed. Boring? No! To us it will be perfect.

We have lots of frozen meals from left overs this week so there won't be very much actual cooking, it will be a real holiday. We have packed lots of warm clothes and the weather forecast looks good too so hopefully the days will be warm and the nights not too cold.

I'll talk to you soon.

Have a wonderful week,


Sunny Side Up Sunday

Hello Dear Reader,

Today I am grateful for some time spent with family, yesterday. We had brunch at a lovely little cafe on the Peninsula. We chatted and reminisced with our Aunty Brenda, her son and DIL and their beautiful daughter, till almost lunchtime. We all enjoyed ourselves, very much and promised not to leave it so long again. It was a perfect day, very warm and the food was excellent too.

What are you grateful for today?

Have a lovely day,


What we bought, spent and ate this week

Saturday, 27 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

I won't waffle on too much as I have a mountain to climb today, I have been awake since about 4am, my mind was in overdrive, thinking of everything we have to achieve today. Our daughter arrived late last night so I haven't seen her yet, they will probably have a bit of a sleep in as they have both had a huge week.

Our future SIL has worked furiously all week making and laying all the steel cages for the footings, but it not complete so unfortunately the concrete slab will not be poured today, it has been rescheduled for later next week. So today they plan to continue looking for a suitable place to set up their business down here and also find a short term rental to live while their home is built. They have two very shy and skittish cats and a dog, so as much as we would love to have them, staying with us wouldn't work out for their fur babies.

Now on with the food-

What we bought

Fruit and veg from the Northside Discount Fruit Barn 

Shopping from Coles

The Aldi Shop

What we spent 

Northside Discount Fruit Barn-$31.15
Marjax Meats-Ham Hock, not pictured-$9.35
Jason's Quality Meats-A Whole Oyster Blade for the slow cooks, not pictured-$40.00

What we ate


Saturday-Slow Cooked Korean Beef

Sunday-Pea and Ham Soup

Monday-Pan Fried Pearl Perch, Potato Bake, Maple and Cinnamon Roasted Pumpkin and Sautéed Silverbeet

Tuesday-Moroccan Cottage Pie

Wednesday-Pan Fried Moses Perch and Snapper with Herby Mashed Potato, Maple and Cinnamon Roasted Pumpkin and steamed Broccoli

Thursday-Slow Cooked Beef Stroganoff 

Over to you what was on your family table this week?

Have a lovely day,

Two Years Ago-Where I Live

This Weeks 5 Frugal Things on a Friday

Friday, 26 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

And hello holidays, I so need you. I have 3 weeks, long service leave, starting this weekend, on Sunday we are going camping on the beach up at Double Island Point for a week, then we'll have two weeks at home, just pottering, it will be divine.

This weekend will be a big one for all of us, our darling daughter and her partner's home build has started and the slab will be poured on Saturday, our future SIL is already down here seeing to house stuff and our daughter flies down tonight, then they will both fly home on Sunday. Lovely Hubby, my Sister and I will be having morning tea with our Aunty Brenda and her Son's family from Tasmania, on Saturday morning then we will be popping down to the block to see how the slab pour is going.

Tomorrow morning, before all of this, I will be putting on a bit pot of Borsch so we can have a family dinner with everyone while our daughter and partner is down here, it's been a while since everyone has been in the same room, so it will be lovely.

Then in the afternoon we will be packing and preparing for camping for 6 days up at our special place. The camper is pretty well ready to go, it will be packing the food into boxed and the fridge, packing our bags with lots of warm clothes and also tidying the house before we go, tying up all the loose ends.

There'll be washing to finish, all the gardens to water, making sure we leave everything out for the pet sitter and so on, so Saturday will be a big day.

With all that on my mind, here's what I got up to on the frugal front-

1. Rinsed the green split peas for the Pea and Ham Soup over a bucket to catch the water, I then watered some plants with it

2. Baked a loaf of bread using this recipe. I baked it on Friday night and as I was very tired, I chose to make this quick but still very delicious bread

3. Made 500 grams of  brown sugar in my Thermomix, just two ingredients and 16 seconds later, Voila! 

4. Picked the last of the silverbeet, I soaked, cut and cooked it all up, some was for dinner that night and the rest was frozen in preparation for making some Roast Pumpkin, Silverbeet and Feta Savoury Rolls to take away with us camping. They'll do nicely for lunches. 

5. Cooked double quantities of four meals to take away with us camping. We ate half for dinner and then I froze the rest. I cooked Slow Cooked Korean Beef, Pea and Ham Soup, Moroccan Cottage Pie and Slow Cooked Beef Stroganoff. So there's four dinner's already done for camping.

Over to you, Dear Reader, what does you weekend hold for you and yours?

Have a lovely day,


This Months Plastic Replacement

Thursday, 25 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

It has been ages since I have written one of these types of posts. When I started on the road to using less plastic in my life, I was posting, most months, about a plastic replacement I had found and loved, well, what can I say, it's been a while.

I had just plateaued in this journey, I think I had done just about everything I could do to reduce my reliance on single use plastic. Here are the changes we have made along the way-

Replaced plastic toothbrushes with a bamboo ones
Had a red hot go at making our own toothpaste-more on that journey later
We use beeswax wraps to cover and wrap food
We take our own mesh bags, containers and glass jars when shopping for fruit and veg, meat and bulk items like, laundry and dish washing liquid, flours, nuts, lentils, pulses and so on
I buy my tea from the local markets, bringing along glass jars to be filled
Gave away our "Pod" coffee machine and bought an espresso machine
Use almond oil in a glass bottle to moisturise my skin
Buy "Who Gives a Crap" toilet paper, tissues and paper towel
We bought a stainless steel, old fashioned, razor and enough blades to last us a lifetime
We use a solid shampoo and I use a solid cleansing bar to cleanse my face
I make our own bread and yoghurt
We bring our stainless steel water bottles with us where ever we go

I'm sure there is more but that is all I can think of at the mo.

So when I had almost run out of dental floss in a plastic container I set about finding a replacement. I stumbled upon this brand called "Dental Lace" it is made with 100% silk and comes in a little glass container with a metal lid and you can buy refills. So far I am thrilled with this, no plastic, alternative to dental floss. I find you do need to be a little more gentle while flossing as the silk does tend to break if you are too forceful with it. But that is a good thing really, as you shouldn't use too much force while flossing, just gently gliding the floss between the teeth.

The Dental Lace arrived in a large cardboard box with lots of recycled paper wrapped around it for protection

An interesting fact

The low down on the packaging and the actual ingredients of the Dental Lace

Over to you Dear Reader, are you on the road to using less plastic in your home, what is your latest swap?

Have a lovely day,

Three Years Ago-Smoked Salmon Pasta

Easy Peasy, Cashew Milk-Thermomix Style

Wednesday, 24 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

This has been another project that I have been wanting to try for ages, but as we had bought a large quantity of Coco-quench the last time it was on special, there was no need to make another dairy milk alternative until we had finished all of the Coco-quench.

I don't do well with dairy milk, I won't go into detail, let's just say, it just doesn't sit well with me. So for many years we have used Coco-quench as our dairy milk alternative, I like it because it has no nasty ingredients and that list isn't extensive, just four simple ingredients. I wanted to try an alternative to this as I am trying to reduce the amount of packaging, plastic or otherwise, from coming into our home.

I had read about how to make a very simple dairy milk alternative using just soaked cashew nuts and water, I was intrigued and as I almost always have cashew nuts at home for making our muesli I finally went ahead and made up a batch last Sunday.

Here's how I made cashew milk-Thermomix Style

Add 1 cup of raw cashews to the TM basket, fill the TM bowl with water so that the cashews are covered, soak the cashews in water for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight 

After 4 hours, drain the cashews and discard the soaking water (I watered some plants with this soaking water)

To the TM bowl, add the soaked cashews and 1 cup of fridge cold water 

Blitz on speed 8.5 for 10 seconds, then scrape down sides. Repeat this step 3 more times, so a total of 4 x 10 seconds on speed 8.5

Then add another 3 cups of fridge cold water and blitz again on speed 5 for 5 seconds. Your Cashew Milk is ready when there are no "bits" left and the resulting "milk" is smooth and silky

Decant into a glass bottle with a tight fitting lid, store in the fridge and use within 5 days

Over to you, Dear Reader, what is the "Milk" of choice in your household and why?

Have a lovely day,

Two Years Ago-A Stitch in Time
Three Years Ago-Sourdough, Three Ways

Tuesday Tip

Tuesday, 23 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

Today is the first edition of a new kind of post, "Tuesday Tip" I will be posting a tip on some random Tuesday's when I can think of a really hot tip that has saved me money or time. Todays tip has to do with preventing food waste, Chipotle Chilli's to be exact.

A little while ago I bought a can of Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce, intending to make a spicy mayonnaise, well that little project hasn't happened as yet, but when a recent recipe called for that particular ingredient, I was finally able to use it.

Now a little Chipotle Chilli, goes a long way, I like a bit of heat but not as much as Lovely Hubby does, he has a much higher heat tolerance than me, so the last thing I wanted was to open this can and have it grow mould or such and waste it.

I remember reading a tip ages ago on how to prevent wasting the whole can of Chipotle Chilli, you simple blitz them and store them in a sealed jar in the fridge, apparently they never go off and because now it is a puree you can use as much or as little as you like.

Now it's your turn, hit me with a hot tip that saves you money or time (or both)

Have a lovely day,


Pumpkin and Lentil Chilli-Thermomix Style

Monday, 22 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

I have recently vowed to use my Thermomix to make complete meals in, I do love my TM, so very much, but I feel I am really under utilising it. So each week I have been checking out recipes that are easy and quick to make in the TM. If you are not familiar with the TM, I will leave a link here of a demonstration from my TM consultant, Lisa. They really are the most amazing machines.

So, last weeks recipe that I chose to make, was a Pumpkin and Lentil Chilli, it has all the usual spices you would normally find in a chilli but the mince has been replaced with red lentils and it worked a treat. It is still very filling and the flavour is divine, top with avocado, coriander, a squeeze of lime and sour cream and your chilli is complete.

Ingredients for Pumpkin and Lentil Chilli, clockwise from top left-
2 teaspoons of red wine vinegar, 2 teaspoons of cacao powder, 1 1/2 teaspoons veggie stock paste, 1 teaspoon ground coriander, 1 teaspoon smoky paprika, 2 teaspoons ground cumin, 180 gram of small tomatoes, 200 grams of red lentils, rinsed, drained and soaked in warm water for 30 minutes, 1 red onion, quartered, juice of one lime, 4 cloves garlic, peeled, 1 red capsicum, roughly chopped, 2 teaspoons chipotle chillies in adobo sauce, 400 gram pumpkin, cut into 1 cm cubes and a can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Prepare veggies

Throw the veggies plus the chipotle chilli into the TM bowl

Chop for 5 seconds, speed 5 

Then sauté for 3 minutes at 120C speed 2 

Add spices, cacao and tomatoes

And cook for 3 minutes at 120 C, speed 2

Now add the drained red lentils, the red wine vinegar and the pumpkin cubes

And cook for 10 minutes at 100 C, reverse, speed 2. Replace the simmer basket with the MC, this allows your chilli to reduce a little

Lastly add the drained kidney beans, salt and pepper to taste and juice of half the lime and cook for 3 minutes at 98 C, reverse, speed 1

The finished chilli

A very delicious and warming dinner, it also made wonderful leftovers, in fact it was even better the next day!

Have a lovely day,


Sunny Side up Sunday

Sunday, 21 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

Today I am grateful for the longer days in our southern hemisphere, we have passed the Winter Solstice and as the days go by, it is quite pronounced how much longer the days are. We walk the little woofs early in the morning and late in the afternoon and we are now walking in daylight for both walks.

What are you grateful for today?

Have a lovely day,

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-Cacao and Honey, Chia Pudding


What we bought, spent and ate this week

Saturday, 20 July 2019
Hello Dear Reader,

We had a more expensive grocery shop last week due to going up to Simply Good and the Golden Circle Factory Outlet as well as our usual shopping from Aldi, Coles and the fruit and veg from the Northside Discount Fruit Barn. I call it swings and roundabouts, some weeks are better than others, I do love a good look though the Golden Circle Factory Outlet as it changes its stock from one week to the next and have a good turnover too.

This last visit saw us buy quite a few treats including packets of chips, flavoured pecans and macadamias, cans of salmon and a big bottle of sweet chilli sauce, not essentials but nice to have every now and then. We will be taking some of those treats away with us camping.

I expect this coming week to also be on the high side as we will be buying some more meat from Jason's Quality Meats, I want to make double quantities of some dinners and freeze the other portion for when we go away camping soon. Cook once and eat twice is a great time saving idea and it will mean I won't need to cook very much while we are away. It will be a true holiday.

Now, on with what we bought, spent and ate this week-

What we bought

The Aldi Shop

Fruit and Veg from the Northside Discount Fruit Barn 

A few items from Coles 

Bulk goods from Simply Good

Treats from the Golden Circle Factory Outlet 

What we spent

Northside Discount Fruit Barn-$24.41
Simply Good-$48.83
Golden Circle Factory Outlet-$41.25

TOTAL-$189.34-swings and roundabouts

What we ate

Friday-Leftover Chicken Soup

Sunday-Vegetarian Chilli-Thermomix Style. This is a fabulous recipe, I will be posting it on Monday

Monday-Tempura Whiting with steamed Basmati Rice and Asian Greens 

Wednesday-Stir Fried Prawns

Your turn, what was on your family table this week?

Have a lovely day,