I've been pottering about some what recently and just don't seem to have made the time to share our journey - sorry!
So much has been happening, life changes so quickly sometimes. One minute you think you know where things are going, the next it's all change and off in a completely different direction.
Within the last couple of weeks I've got a job! I know it's been ten months now that I have lived my very frugal life and got by without the need for much of an income. Life is funny, it was in the Summer that the children and I were discussing the future, they talked about wanting animals (more animals), ponies, dogs, cats, a pig (well that was my suggestion)....well this is all good and fair says she, but we have enough pets for now and don't have the space to keep any more, I shall have to meet a farmer......'Ooooh', they say...the next minute they are trying to fix me up with the next farmer to cross our path...highly embarrassing!!!
Anyway, several months later I have a job as a companion to a lovely farmer, local to me. This is not as the children and I had discussed (no to romance), but we will be on the farm often which should work out well for all. Male company for small boy, space (well we don't exactly lack that), and animals, machines, farming....we are starting this week, just six hours a week but it's a start and should keep the wolf from the door, not that he'd get anywhere near ours with the toys, bikes and doll's prams in the way!
Talking about living frugally, I have just finished reading 'How to be free' by Tom Hodgkinson. Have you ever wondered why you live to work? Yes it's true most people these days do seem to live to work. I find that quite scary and I (even in my current situation) wasn't about to compromise my life of freedom to join the majority. It's worth a read if you ever want out of the rat race folks! I got so hooked I ended up reading his guide to idle parenting too....I think I am there already, but good to read and re-inspire!
With the weather changing so rapidly I've been starting to snuggle and embrace to weather and changing seasons. I have held off on lighting that fire still although there is a bag of marshmallows calling to me from the bread bin that are tempting and awaiting the opportunity to be eaten, once toasted of course!
Then there are Winter projects that I'm starting to think about. I am yet to make small boy a quilt for his bed which I have been meaning to do for years. So yesterday I was in the area of my most favourite fabric shop in the world (Mason's in Abingdon) and became tempted to the extent to having to purchase the fabric. I want to create something 'boylike' and blue (I know.....), so went for various shirt fabrics, all cotton. Just a quarter of a metre of each should be enough for the front and an old white sheet for the backing. If there are enough offcuts, they'll do for the outer boarder. Ooooh I do get excited when I have a new project up my sleeve. I'll hand sew this one, it will take hours but there is something really rather satisfying about completing a quilt project by hand and the lovely thing is I can just take out little bits to sew when I have a spare moment. Waiting for the girls ballet class, the swimming lessons, waiting for dinner to cook....busy hands! :-))
My lovely grandparents have had a glut of tomatoes....I do so love it when people have an abundance of items that they are happy to share. People get fed up with stuff, especially when they have been eating for weeks. 'Thank you'! Mmmm now what to do with them......thinking tomato ketchup, pasta/pizza sauce, chutney...oh the options are endless. More for the 'store stump', goodie goodie I do love being creative!
Talking of vegetables, I have just discovered a loooovvvely farm shop near by that sells mainly homegrown organic vegetables. Well what a delight! I do usually buy all my veges from a national box scheme and have done for years, but having stuff growing right on your doorstep has to be better surely. And unlike the box scheme, I am able to go into the shop and choose exactly what I want. Last week I got rather carried away and purchased all this..........for £20....of course this further fuels up my creativity as I feel the serious need not allow any bit of my spend to go to waste nor to perish in the bottom of my fridge. Those green/yellow peppers were soooo delicious!!
I've been thinking about drying herbs and wild plants for use during the Winter months but haven't as yet been out to gather much. I have dried some yarrow and collected quite a bundle of lime flowers at the end of the Summer (how amazing they smelt). I did manage to bring in a large amount of my lavender and have had that drying for weeks now in my study/utility room window. Often when I am sitting and waiting for photos to upload, I'll pull off some of the dried flower heads. Makes the room smell simply divine. I sense the need to make some lavender bags here, perhaps I might make them for Christmas presents? Talking of which, it's that time of year already. Time to think about and actually start making some little gifts to give to family and friends. It happens every year...I have these great plans to make all my gifts so that I can give something a little unique and special, but my oh my do I regret my decision every time. It's not the giving that's the problem, it's the time (or lack of). No one should ever feel that they have been short-changed by a home made gift. Sooo much time, dedication and commitment goes into the production of them. There is always a mad rush to be witnessed on Christmas eve in my house, stitching, sticking etc to get the jobs done.
Last year due to events most people got handed a bottle of my home brewed wine! Ummmm probably enough said about that one!!!!!