Thursday, 3 April 2014

Slow Living in March

I can't believe another month has flown by!  It's time for the monthly link-up with Christine at Slow Living Essentials.  But before I give you a run down on what I achieved in each of the categories I have some important business.

Today it was time to draw the winner of the PIP Australian Permaculture Magazine.  And the winner is.........  Louise from Winks to Remember!!  Congratulations Louise.  Could you please send me an email with your address?  My email is on the right of my blog but it doesn't link through (it was too complicated for me).  Soon you'll be reading a copy of the first edition of an inspiring new magazine!

So back to the month of March and the lovely link-up with other slow living bloggers;

Nourish - Belle turned eleven in March so we had some party food.  I decorated the cakes with violas from the garden.  Actually Christine, I used your recipe for the cup cakes but coloured the batter to make rainbow cup cakes (a birthday request).  Love that recipe.  It's so quick!
I picked up the most amazing basket of summer goodies at our swap market.  I also had a go at making apple cider vinegar this month.  It was incredibly easy.  The recipe was from the last edition of Grass Roots Magazine if you want to give it a try.
 Prepare - Ha!  This is the category I've been looking forward to!  I finally have some serious preparing to report.  Guess what I did this month?  I went to a preserving workshop!  I kinda knew most of it but I gained a lot of confidence by working with others and under the tuition of someone much more experienced than me. Now I'm madly bottling more tomatoes at home.  I'll have heaps for the winter.

I've also been making a lot of salads-in-a-jars for Hubby's lunches.  A friend reminded me of their existence and I'm loving the convenience of making several lunches at once.  Google it.  You'll love them.

Reduce - At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I'm still trying to reduce the STUFF in this house.  I've done well downstairs.  I have one cupboard to go in the kids room.  Then I'll start upstairs.  That's our bedroom.  I'm actually scared of it!!  It's the room that no-one enters so if I have something and I don't know where to put it, that's where it goes!!!  Argghhh!  Now is the time.  No more procrastinating.  And you will never, never, never see a photo of my bedroom as it stands!

Green - Can't think of anything new except the beautiful shoots of grass that are coming up after months of dirt and dust.  A little bit of rain causes magic to happen!!

Grow - I have failed dismally in this category.  I have harvested some stuff this month but I can't even plant the seedlings because we have no garden water.  The dam is too low to pump from so I'm waiting for big rains.  The photo below will give you an idea of how desperate I am.  The poor children would love a bath but it's showers only for us!!
Create - I made some pads this month and I reckon they look pretty good.  I still need to buy the press stud-y bit to do them up.  I've returned to knitting a jumper for Buddy Boy now the weather is getting cool again.
Discover - I was lucky enough to hear about a crowd funded magazine about permaculture.  I wasn't able to go to their launch but I did help fund the magazine.  The first issue is out and it sounds like it is about to sell out.  It has been received very well.  You can subscribe to PIP Australian Permaculture Magazine online.  I have really enjoyed playing my very small role by donating.  There is a certain feeling of life being 'right' when people achieve amazing things without relying on govt. or big business.
Enhance - The preserving workshop was fantastic!  To get together with a bunch of people and work together was amazing.  It was wonderful to have experienced people sharing their skills with others.  What goes around comes around I hope.  And as I always say..... that community, connected feeling just can't be beat!
Enjoy - I found this month quite hard.  I had a mini-melt down which felt quite horrible.  I like doing these posts and remembering all that is good in life.  I enjoyed lots this month.  I particularly enjoyed catching up with family and seeing my granddaughters that I really don't see often enough!  Especially one little new person that I live far too far away from.  I loved having special cuddles.
And it was nice to see my big special people too.
I hope your March was wonderful and your April is even better!

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EMMA said...

Wow, that is an amazing looking basket of goodies! I'd love to go to a preserving workshop - I do more and more canning each year but I'm never quite sure I'm doing things, especially sterilizing, properly.
Going to google salads-in-a-jar now, sound like an excellent idea.
Enjoy your april.

Lee Ratliff said...

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Urban Homestead South Africa said...

Very interesting concept - the salads in a jar! Your littlest granddaughter is beautiful.

Kim said...

A very industrious month for you Linda! There is something so lovely about stuff in jars sitting in a shelf or in the fridge . Your salad jars look like works of art.

Farmer Liz said...

That preserving workshop sounds good! But I didn't grow any tomatoes this year with the dry. Hope you get decent rain soon it makes me stressed too when its dry. I'm waiting for my pip to arrive...

purplepear said...

Love seeing all that's going on down your way during the months.Love the look of those lunches in jars.

Wendy Meijer said...

Preserving workshop sounds like fun!

city garden country garden said...

Bringing the plants to the shower rather than having to carry heavy buckets outside is a great idea. And it reminded me of those really hot days of summer when we put our chickens in the bath (empty!) when it was cooler in the bathroom than outside!

Thanks for spurring me on to subscribe to PIP with your recent post. My copy arrived the other day and I'm really enjoying reading through it.

kiwirachfindinghome said...

I like the sound of the preserving workshop. I'll have to see if they have them here in NZ. Gorgeous wee grand baby :-)

Linda said...

Emma, you sound like me. I kept trying to preserve but wasn't completely comfortable. Let's face it, we don't want to poison our families!

Wendy, thank you. She's very sweet!

Yes Kim, stored food is so satisfying. Feels like real success.

Liz, they weren't my tomatoes! Worst gardening summer ever. I bought two 10 kilo boxes from a grower and some at the preserving workshop.

Hi Kate, I'm loving the jars. I like knowing hubby is eating well at work. He's gone for so many hours every day!

It was great Wendy. So nice to get together with others to achieve the same aim.

CGCG, enjoy your mag. You've just reminded me that I need to announce the winner on the actual giveaway post. Thanks.

Rachel, if you can't find a workshop, see if you can find an experienced preserver. Most people love to share knowledge. Then get together with a couple of friends and preserve whatever is in season.

sustainablemum said...

We have the opposite problem to you, too much water. It rained all winter here so I hope it won't all summer too!

How lovely to get together with all of your family when you love so far apart. Your gran daughter looks gorgeous.

Evi said...

Hey LInda, I wish we had some sort of classes for preserving around here. There doesn't seem to b anything like that at all. In fact, I've been considering starting a craft group up here just so we have some sort of community event that teaches some basics. Trouble is I just can't fit it in, even if I felt clever enough to do it!
Your tiny granddaughter is such a cutey. Ive been wondering how your girl is getting on with the new baby - it's not an easy task being a new mum, I remember it well.
Here's hoping you get some more rain to keep your 'green' going!!!

Linda said...

Hi sustainable mum, I can't imagine TOO MUCH water! I hope your summer is perfect. We actually have rain this morning. It rained gently all day yesterday and last night too. All feels good with the world.

Evi, I'm surprised that you don't have some sort of similar group. I know of quite a few people moving to Tassie to pursue the sustainable life in a place that rains regularly! I know what you mean about the time thing though. I've taken a back step since I began homeschooling. I prefer to just be a participant these days. Rosie is doing very well. I love watching her parent. She's very comfortable in her new role. Maybe years of watching me raising babies helped?

Kathy said...

It is so interesting to read about things like gardening in another part of the world. Salads in a jar are getting a second look from me - thanks for the great post full of ideas!

Linda said...

Thanks Kathy. I know! I never fail to be surprised to read about the opposite season happening somewhere. Enjoy the salads!