About Me

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I am happily married and have two very rough and tumble boys. I have ideals of self sufficiency and low impact. My favourite passtime is growing veggies, reading books on all kinds of topics, finding out about how things impact earth and your body.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

I'm so excited - I can hardly contain myself!

I love a bargain! who doesn't? I also love second hand treasures and I love op shops and tip shops. In my house my entire family wears second hand - the only time we get new is jox and sox and birthday presents! phew I hear you say!

Recently my hubby has been on at me to get a bike. - The kids have bikes, hubby has a bike and he says "A family that rides together-stays together" I think he stole that saying coz I have heard it somewhere before!
Well a last Friday guess where we went? and guess what I got? How clever you are! of course it was the tip shop and yep, got myself a bike.

The local tip shop - AKA Dakabin Treasure Market is only open Fri - Sun and Friday is so packed but you have to go coz that is when they have the most stuff! Over the years I have found hundreds of bargains. Most are for me to onsell via eBay where I have made a small fortune! One day I may share some with you but for now I don't want to get away from sharing my latest bargain.

My lastest treasure is of course my bike. Now as you can guess as it was one mans (or ladies) trash it is slightly used! but you know I treasure it coz now I can go riding with my 3 beautiful boys!

Let me recall how much we paid for each of our bikes. Monty's bike (the smallest one) is a hand me down from Adam and I cannot remember how much but lets say $100. Adam's bike was $35 from - you guessed again! the tip shop. Aaron's bike was $NIL$ (the best kind) from Freecycle (another of my favourite sites!), and mine was a grand total of $10. We have paid more for the bike rack than any of them!
Now for the test run.....

The helmet was $4 by the way!

Wow, my knees hurt and I don't do hills :(
Till I recover...
Bye for now

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Our Self Sustaining Lifestyle v's Gross!

Well the deed is done.... our 5 free chickens from our son's prep school all turned out to be roosters and as they are really only good for eating then that is precisely what we shall do with them.

Today was the day.....for the chop chop chop (I know wrong animal!!)

Last year when we lopped 8 roosters on the head it was done during school hours so that the boys didn't have to feel compelled to watch. But well, time got away from us yesterday and so today was the day.

Our 8 and 6 year old sons lined up to 'help'... then Mr 6 decides he doesn't want to watch and meh, do you mind if I don't put my hand inside either? but I will help you pluck the feathers out.... Mr 8 watches the first chop and well lets say he didn't offer to swing the axe for the next 4!.

On to plucking??? not the same as pluka duck off Hey Hey let me tell you! They did one small handful and said "gross it smells like jacko!" (which for those that don't know is our little fluffy dog!). Mmmm, I think that is an idication the dog needs a bath!. lol

The gutting was then watched by the boys from behind closed doors!! and in the end the question was asked "When would you boys like roast chicken" and to our absolute amazement - the answer was 'tonight'!!

I love the feeling of being as self sufficient as we can in this modern - fast food era that we live in. It reminds me of what one chicken farmer said in the movie "Food Inc" - driving past these smelly chicken feedlots and he says "Smells like money to me". Well let me tell you I just saved myself $50 by growing my own so it smelt like money to me too.! (Mine is hormone and antibiotic free tho!).

Not the most glamorous job in the world - but as glad as I am for it have been done - it is very satisfying at the same time. Just need to get the boys to stop being princesses and help out a bit more next time :)

Bye for now

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Does she need us or do we need her?

That, my dear readers - is the Big question. I am of course referring to good ol Mother Earth.

I know you know the answer - she doesn't need us at all. Who would have thought! But do any of us really ever consider just how much we need her?

It never dawned on me until recently that everything we do stays under this one roof - our atmosphere. I know that may sound naive that here I am at 40 something (a lady never divulges her age)! - that I hadn't given it the time of day and I suspect I am not alone.

I was googling one day about how to grow asparagus and stumbled across this link to this book called "The Story of Stuff" by Annie Leonard. I hastily looked in the local library and found it, devoured it in days and it really opened my eyes to how wasteful and needy I had become! Now most people don't get excited when a book shows up their bad points, but you see I am different. I never thought of myself as a needy person! I thought I was doing good - hey - I recycle. I am careful with water. I have those funny looking pigs tail light bulbs so how could I be needy and wasteful? Well, it turns out I was in a whole different way!.

While I am not obsessed with the latest fashion, do dads, gadgets and nor am a shopaholic (can't stand those big box shopping centres and detest those parking lots)  I am obsessed with plastic! You probably are too! its everywhere so how can you not be? Obsessed is probably a bit harsh - its kind of a forced obsession - I don't love it but I need it!. Anyway - Why is everything individually wrapped? Why is cereal in plastic then cardboard?? No, seriously - I want to know? What is plastic made from? Oil....

Here is a pic of a box of cereal we opened the other day. Its the biggest one (820g) - why is this bag half full and then put into a box twice its size? (excluding the slight bulge!)

Anyway, not to harp on about my weaknesses - after I had finished the book,  I stole (um ah) Annies' motto which is "Use it up, Wear it out, Make it do, or Do without" and at times this is quite difficult for ones, as myself, who have become used to just buying something new "because we can". Whatever happened to wearing last years fashion? fixing the watch, repairing a shoe, or buying second hand? My guess is nothing.

One other slap int he face I got from the book was that there is no 'away' - like "throw that away" - where does it go? It stays right here on Earth. Leaching and rotting! .... even if we incinerate the "stuff", the toxins get flumed back in the air we breathe, the ash or molten plastic leaches into our soil and waterways and begins a new (and sometimes) more toxic journey.

I only mention plastic and landfill because otherwise this would be the longest blog in history (oil will have its day soon!), but just mentioning 2 things starts to hit home that while we rape and pillage the Earth for all its worldly goods, what do we actually give back to her? She just happily sits there and takes in all of our waste and harm and what happens when it all runs out? what will be left with? big holes in the ground, no clean air and yukky fish!

So do we actually think about how much we need the Earth and how healthy we need it to be? I will let you answer that.... while I work out how to stop buying plastic. :)
have a good night

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I am finally online!

Well as my title suggests - Here I Am - It has taken me ages to get around to starting this blog and each time I take a picture of something growing in my garden or a delish meal I have prepared for my family I think to myself "Self, start that blog and have your own little 'show and tell' online".  And well.... I'm doin it!

I have chosen a name for my blog that best describes us - my family!. It is an acronym of GREEN which is how we try and live.   

I live on acreage (with my hubby and 2 boys) on the outskirts of a capital city in Australia - I know - how lucky are we? We absolutely love it - perched on top of a hill with views of a lake, the city but the peace and quiet of rural living.

Our dream is to live as sustainably as possible- {well as best as we can in this modern, throw away, must have, materialistic, oil addicted, fast paced, overworked society we live in!}...haha!! Mrs Negativity!! to eat seasonal produce (hopefully grown ourselves) and to eat food grown as locally as possible. I don't profess to ever want to try the "100 mile diet" like that a couple did in Vancouver a while back! but if we can keep to within our state or even within Australia I would be ok with that!

Hopefully I will show you how easy it can be to start doing a few greener things, plant a small garden and it maybe just turning the tv off at the wall - but as we are all part of the same planet - every little bit will help.

I can't wait to show you around my place in the very near future but I must go and collect my kids from school so it is Bye for now.