Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Slow Living Monthly Nine - September 2014

Welcome to the Slow Living link-up for a re-cap of our first spring month here in Australia!  I'm looking forward to reading your accounts and to hearing the reports of contrasting seasons from elsewhere in the world.  We've been enjoying some beautiful sunny days and the garden is springing into life after its slow and gentle winter growth.

Please link-up with us and tell us what September held for you under the nine categories.  Thank you Christine (Slow Living Essentials) for dreaming up this wonderful way to connect and get inspiration from others!


Eggs are back on the menu.  We've been enjoying quiches again and having boiled eggs as part of casual meals of bits and pieces.  The girls and I love egg sandwiches too. I love them with lettuce for a bit of fresh crunch!
We also had a chicken meal in September that featured one of our roosters.  Not the gentle giant in the above photo.  We are purposely growing chooks for this very reason.  My rationale being that I can give them a great life, respectful death and lessen our environmental impact.  I must say though, I really procrastinate when it comes to eating them.  This particular rooster pushed me along by attacking me and doing a bit of damage with his spurs.  I really don't enjoy the meals when one of our chooks are in the pot but I'm just going to keep at it.  It makes no sense to be able to enjoy a chook that I didn't know personally but not my own.  A life is a life.  I figure if I don't want to become a vegetarian, I have to keep trying until I can view the meals as 'normal'.

It's lemon season and although I don't have them in profusion, plenty of my friends do.  I've been given heaps of lemons to make cordial with.  This year I'd like to get a good stock of summer drinks going before the weather heats up.  It's difficult to get ahead though because the kids love the cordial.

I've started working on Christmas gifts already.  I would love to have a Christmas without purchased gifts but making presents is very time consuming.  With a bit of luck, if I start now, I will have my greenest Christmas yet.  I know if I get a head start on the presents, I will look forward to the day instead of stressing about it like I so often do!


Well!  I read a great post by Melissa at Frugal and Thriving about making your own hot oil treatment for dry hair.  It has really worked on my dry, grey hair but.....  I used just olive oil and geranium essential oil (I'm allergic to lavender).  I wash my hair with soap so I gave it three washes to rinse out the oil and left it to dry.  Lucky I wasn't going anywhere that day because it didn't all come out.  It was sooo oily!  The next day I washed it a couple more times and now it's lovely and soft.  If you give it a try, it might be best not to do it on the day of a special occasion.


I just couldn't stay out of the garden this month!  It's become like an obsession.  I have added compost to beds, helped the children prepare their own veggie beds at their request, sewn seeds, planted seedlings, fertilised.....  I have lettuce, silver beet, rhubarb, spring onions, cauliflower, herbs and we harvested a couple of cabbages.  I'm giving my spring seedlings daily attention as we head into the next season of plants.  Love, love, love being in the garden on these sunny, spring days!

Well I can't show you what I'm doing for Christmas because the family would see their pressies!  I was also very busy making shopping bags and vegetable bags for the event in the next category.  Belle helped me sew them and in the process she learnt to use the sewing machine.  She has since made shoulder bags for herself and her little sister, Pumpkin.  I'm quite proud of her.  I certainly didn't know how to sew at eleven years old.

On the weekend of the climate marches, our environment group went to a local supermarket and gave away shopping bags that we had sewn.  We took our machines and sewed more bags on the spot.  All the bags were made from recycled material.  We figured that it was a great way to start conversations and thought around climate change and the personal actions that can be taken.  The event was well received and hopefully we've encouraged a few of the people we spoke with to shop with reusable bags rather than plastic.

After breaking my computer, I had a new hard drive installed.  I am now using Windows 8 and I hate it.  I feel like I'm learning to use the computer all over again.  It is soooo different that I'm even having trouble just locating explorer and photos.  Very frustrating when writing posts though I suppose like anything, it will become easy over time.


Did I tell you that I'm enjoying gardening?  Hee hee!
Link up below to share your September with us and don't forget to visit all the inspirational slow living bloggers!


Fiona from Arbordale Farm said...

What a great month you have had. I have been thinking about Christmas too and have started on the pressies. I am about to start on making my Xmas cards.

Kathy said...

Always fun at the change of seasons to keep track of the opposites, to watch you all get ready for summer and I am ready for cooler weather! I laughed at the hair treatment - I tried coconut oil and was a greasy mess for a couple of days, it should come with a warning "don't use very much"! The reminder about Christmas was needed as well - Thanks!

sustainablemum said...

It so wonderful to spend time in the garden in spring I am enjoying it too although it is autumn for us this year I am more focused on readying the garden for the winter.

I try to make as many presents as possible too. I will never be able to make them all but try to make as many as possible. I have learnt that small and simple is the key!

Thank you for hosting.

Suzie Simplelife said...

Wow and eating one of your own chooks...well done you. It's so silly but I would really stuggle with matter how many episodes of River Cottage I watched..which by the way got me started on this lifestyle...I am completely onboard with raising happy livestock for the pot...just not brave enough to go through with it. Looks like you've had a lovely month...I'm also going to try a few homemade Christmas gifts this year.

JustForDaisy said...

What a wonderful update! :) Love the bag making idea - what a great way to encourage your community!

Unknown said...

Oh Linda I love that you gave away bags, you are so passionate about this and what a wonderful way to share that! I hope everyone who took bags appreciated your effort and will change their habits. (I learnt to sew at intermediate school in NZ, age 11 and 12, I don't think they teach it anymore, but they should, even a basic knowledge can be so useful, so its great that your girls will have that benefit from homeschooling, well done!!).

EMMA said...

What a great idea to give away handsewn shopping bags!
I think I would feel the same way as you if we were to eat one of our hens - we only have laying hens - but I'm sure I would get used to it soon enough if we had meat chickens.
I've tried linking up but for some reason my link isn't working this month?

Have a great month, enjoy your garden.

EMMA said...

Sorry Linda - it looks like my link has worked - 3 times!!and I don't know how to take the two 'extra's' off!

Linda said...

Fiona, I hadn't thought about cards yet! Gulp! I'd better get cracking.

Kathy, I should have known better. I've made the same mistake with the kids once. They had lice and I used a home remedy that wouldn't come out!

Sustainablemum, I agree. Small and simple. I just need to make sure I am clever with matching the gift to the person so the gift is special.

Suzie, It wasn't easy. This was the first time I had done the whole process myself from start to finish. I forced myself to eat the meal but, do you know, I found eating the meal nearly as hard as killing the rooster!

Bekka Joy, thank you. We felt pretty happy with the day.

Yes it was great Liz. I fb'd you re fregie bags while I was organising but my message must have got lost. I'll email next time! I'm not sure if they teach sewing in schools still. Probably not.

Emma, haha! That's funny! I don't know how to fix it either! Lucky you write interesting posts. People might be reading it three times! Lol

Tania said...

It is great to catch up with what you have been up to last month. Sounds like you have been very busy. This year is really flying by.

I am going to try oiling my hair as it is curly and so dry. I read somewhere to use coconut oil, leave it in for a while then rinse. I will take your advise and not do it on a day that I will be going anywhere. Just in case...

purplepear said...

Looks like you've had another wonderful month. I am so upset that I will miss your visit.

Joy Belle said...

Linda, you can make windows 8 look just like earlier versions.... just don't ask me how. I have to get tech support for anything like that.

city garden country garden said...

Hi Linda, well done and thank you for taking on the hosting role for this link-up, even though I've been slack and haven't posted for the last couple of months!

It sounds like your garden is doing fabulously, there's nothing as promising as fruit blossoms is there? Here's hoping you have a great crop next year. I know I won't as my chickens ate most of the blossoms off my fruit trees that I had in pots. Actually they were lucky not to end up like your rooster, in a pot themselves, when I realised! ;)

Unknown said...

WOW! Sure wish I had the gumption to make all handmade gifts. Good for you for getting a good early start. ENJOY!!

Anonymous said...

Those lemons look so fresh that is one thing we have not had a lot of free lemons this year.
Christmas? No it can't be coming up so soon.