Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Nativity scene and other Christmas things

I have looked for a nativity scene I liked for a few years. I really loved the Willow Tree ones but did not love the price tag. I found one once I liked but didn’t have the money. When I did and decided I did want one, they were sold out. Then finally this Christmas I found one.

It is a very simple child like one, not a real looking one, but I really liked it. I got it today for half price and am extremely happy with it. I know it is not what everyone would like or have but I love it.

I still think about the one that got sold out though. It was a little scene with just Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus and it was sitting in a letter of a word such as joy, hope, peace. I liked the hope one and they were sitting in the ‘o’. If I ever see one like it again I will just buy it!

I must say I was quite disappointed in the “sales”. There were a few things on my list I wanted to get but many items were priced higher than they were presales, so I just refused to buy them. I will continue looking, but am not holding my breath.

One thing I wanted to do was change my decorations to blue and silver. I have been collecting blue and silver decorations for the last 2 years. My husband did not want blue and silver when we got married so we got the red and gold he wanted. We were given a gift voucher for The Warehouse (Clints/Chickenfeed/Go-Lo, you know one of the cheap shops) at Christmas one year so we could go buy a tree and decorations. (Just to clarify we asked for that shop, as we knew the voucher would be small and at least this way we’d get something!)

Anyway, so back then we got a small sparse tree for $7 (he did not want to spend more and get a better tree) and $15 worth of red and gold baubles and tinsel. I have hated our tree every year. To me it is ugly and cheap. I know its shouldn’t be that big a deal and figured when we had kids they would trash a lot of it. Well, they kind of did this year. Much to my joy.

I was hoping to get my tree for a good price but no such luck yet. I have my eye on one (ok, 2 but he won’t go for the big one I REALLY want, so I we are compromising) it is 7ft (I wanted the 9ft) plush tear drop style. I have 1 string of 180 lights but will need more. Where are they all this year, all I could find were ugly solar ones mostly!

If it gets reduced by another $50 I will get it, but I am looking online in the meantime. I am also looking in the sales for more blue and silver decorations but haven’t really found many I like. I did find one bell and my daughter found a key she liked, but that is all really.

Oh well. I have a whole year to look online and stuff. I will most likely order some things from the USA or something OR if my sister in law does get married over there next year buy up when I am there!

I am also planning a trip to a specific Christmas shop later in the year with my mother in law, so I can be patient if what I want is not around right now.

I am really happy with my nativity scene though.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Starting the vegetable garden

Yesterday when making my desk I came across these seeds. I got them from my mum a few years ago, but was unable to use them all.  I have some herbs already growing from the basil and mint she gave me, but I did not have the space for the carrots and beans and radishes (I LOVE radishes, but no one else in my family here does so I am very excited to grow my own).

So my plan today if I have time, otherwise tomorrow is to prep the area I plan on planting my vegies in and getting the garden ready then plant my seeds.

We have been meaning to do this since we moved but just haven't had time, we had so much else to do first.

We know where we want it, we have seeds, dirt, bricks to create a border, we just didn't have time.

I'll be moving a few things that are growing in pots to this new garden, such as lettuce, basil and rosemary. I'll be keeping the mint in its pot and the aloe vera.

I am hoping to grow a decent crop. My herbs did really well before, I let them go to seed and they grew more which was really exciting.

So stay tuned, I'll have pics of my 'new' vegie garden soon!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

My new from old desk

We have had this old crate in the garage since we bought the house.
It's got 3 sections and I remember when my nan came up and saw it she was most excited. She said old apple crates like that sell really well where she is from. Someone would buy it in an instant.

My husband wanted to throw it out 5yrs ago when we got the house. Me I wanted to keep it. I had no use in mind and it was filthy, but I liked it. So this week I had an idea and I pulled it out.

When I cleaned it up I saw this

I looked it up. This company switched from wood to plastic like 65 years ago! So this crate is pretty old. I still really like it.

This week I decided it would be one side of my desk.

The other side would be this other crate that has sat in my garage for 3.5yrs. Yeah, I am a hoarder.

Anyway, this crate had nails sticking out of it and wooden bits I need to cut off.

The lid had heaps of nails sticking out of it like this

So I pulled them all out, sanded the pine crate and cleaned both of them.

I then put them in my room with a piece of chipboard I had laying around.
I still need to add the hinges to my 'cupboard' door, which are also in my garage from a project that got changed. I want to paint the chipboard and possibly put in another shelf in the cupboard but here it is.

It took me a couple of hours to do it all, but I like it.

There was only 1 thing that didn't go quite as planned. I knew that the old crate was 4cm higher than the new crate, but I was going to use the wood off cuts to balance them out. It didn't quite work. So instead I banged in the nails I pulled out to have 4cm sticking out the top to balance both sides.

It also gives a nice little home for paper work or my laptop.

Not bad for a free desk. It'll look better once I have finished it properly. I have already put books in the old crate. I didn't want to change that crate in any way because I think I might use it for something else in the future.

Considering I was going to pay $200 for a desk, I am really happpy.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Kitchen renos

 This is what my kitchen currently looks like. Beautiful isn't it? The above picture is the view from the door near the front door and the view below is from the other end.
That hideous lino has been ripped up since I took this pic, but I wanted to give you an idea of what I am working with.

We ripped out all the cupboards, sink, everything and got rid of it all. The oven is the only thing we are keeping.

Now we need to prep all the walls, fix the hole in the ceiling, sand and repaint, then we can get started in what the kitchen will actually look like.

We are thinking white cabinets, light stone coloured benchtop probably granite with the floorboards polished up nicely.

For now my kitchen consists of an oven and a bucket for a sink. I use the dining room table in the rumpus room to prepare everything. My fridge and freezer are out there as well. Then I cook it all in the kitchen. It is a bit of back and forth, but its what we have to do right now.

We had to rip out the kitchen. It was completely disgsting and unsable. Every hinge was a cockroach nest. Disgusitng.

It'll take a while, but we'll get a new kitchen.

Monday, December 13, 2010

We have been busy working away at the garden. We've maed some great headway and found some surprise plants.
The first one was the big one in the first pic.
We want a tropical look so were extremely happy to find this one.

Not only did we find it, but it has 2 babies!!

They are little and hidden under another bush but we'll be digging them out and replanting them soon.

We also found this little rose bush

Also we have found and replanted 2 palms, mondo grass and some succulents.
We are hoping to be able to do it all for next to nothing and at the rate we are going finding plants it should work out pretty well.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Why I will never use plug in freshners again

Lately I have been quite sick. I have been getting dizzy spells. I would get really weak and faint, I could walk, then my vision would go and I couldn’t see. I could hear, but not respond to those talking to me which was making it hard to do much. An ‘episode’ would completely exhaust me and I would often sleep afterwards, sometimes for hours. I was tired all the time.

I went to my doctors about it and had to go for a ct scan, which came back clear. I was then booked in to get more tests with a neurologist which will be happening in about a fortnight.

In the meantime I was discussing it with my mum and we both thought possible chronic fatigue so I did some Googling. Gotta love Google.

Anyway, I came across some articles talking about the link between CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) and those plug in air freshners and it dawned on me. I have only had these symptoms since plugging them in. We put one in the car because my kids spilt some drinks and we cleaned it but it still had a ‘scent’. A few weeks later we got one for home because my mother in law had one and we liked the smell. When we moved house we got 2 because the house was much bigger.

Looking at the timeline of my symptoms and how they gradually got worse I realised it is probably those things, so I unplugged.

The next day I was still not 100% nor did I expect o be but I did feel better. It was the first day in quite some time I had not needed a nap during the day. I was able to do things and whilst I was still tired it was not to the point of being unable to do anything, which was such a relief.

It has been almost 2 weeks since I unplugged and my symptoms are pretty much gone. I still do not feel completely back to normal, but it looks like that can take up to a few months anyway but I do feel A LOT better.

I will still go to the neurologist because I don’t want to misdiagnose myself, but I am pretty confident I have sorted the problem!