Green and Thrifty: Virus Edition
My collection of cuttings growing roots in jars of water on the windowsill. Nature makes plants for free!
Ok, I have some good ones:
If you only do the dishes every other day it saves on hot water, plus less wear and tear on dishcloths. Also, it doesn't matter because no-one is coming over to judge your slatternly kitchen.
Not Going Anywhere saves so much on fuel.
Grocery shopping once a fortnight means you have to eat up absolutely everything in the fridge before you shop again. Thus you discover you have capers. Then you spend some time thinking about what to put capers in. Then you just put them on and in everything. Capers are good. Then you run out of capers. Then you discover a jar of home-cured olives...
Also, substitutes. I discovered that you can make icing without icing sugar. Mr Google will show you substitutes for just about anything. Try the general search term Making X Without Y. You may find useful surprises such that icing (frosting) made without icing sugar (powdered sugar) makes a yummy whipped frosting that is not cloyingly sweet. Sweet!
When procrastinating about things you ought to be doing you clean out under the kitchen sink and discover you have extra bottles of dish washing liquid that have probably been there since 2017.
Posy and I are knitting patchwork curtains for her bedroom window out of scrap wool. Yes, you read that right. Knitted patchwork curtains. Luckily it is quite a small window. We are about a third of the way along.
I discovered while buying stamps on the Australia Post website that if you hold a government concession card (pension, seniors, healthcare, veteran) that you can apply for a discount on stamps, with your first five stamps for free. I sent the link to my mum, who writes a lot of letters. I haven't used a stamp for years but since these iso days Posy has taken to sending hand-written letters and care packages to her friends, which is adorable.
I mended a pair of pyjama pants that were hand-me-ups from Rosy a couple of years ago. I patched them with an old singlet top of Rosy's and a pyjama top belonging to Posy when she was ten. I want to make it clear that I do not save every single piece of clothing that my children outgrow, only those that are too stained or worn to pass along. Truly. Really.
I made another batch of dog food with the remains of a lamb bone the neighbour brought over, brown rice and silverbeet from the garden. This all goes in the crockpot for a lot of hours on the back verandah until I suddenly remember it is there..
I cut beautiful white chrysanthemums from my garden for my mum for Mothers' Day. These chrysanthemums were given to me last year because they were dying in a plant pot at a friend's place. I pruned the 'mums' and planted them in the garden and they are flowering prolifically and beautifully. All the prunings I also planted in pots so I have now planted out four more 'mums' in the garden and given several away. Every time you prune a chrysanthemum bush, either poke the cuttings into potting mix or put them in a jar of water until they grow roots (a couple of weeks) then plant them in the garden. Now I know that they are so easy to propagate I am on the lookout for chrysanthemums in different colours that I can tweak cuttings from to add to the garden.
Posy made pancakes for Mothers' Day dinner with cream cheese, smoked salmon, capers and sprinkles of parsley. So yum. She also whipped up another batch of rooibos chai for me. I buy all the spices separately and Posy knows which ones to add to make perfect chai. It is much cheaper than buying it already mixed and you can make it just how you like it. Today Posy added cinnamon stick, grated nutmeg, fennel seeds, cardamon pods, black peppercorns, star anise, cloves and ground ginger. Just delicious. Rosy made me an apple cake out of apples from her tree:) Also delicious.
Eating this week:
From the garden: Lemons, silverbeet, parsley, sage, spinach, lettuce, the last of the green beans
Stored food: garlic
Preserved food: lemon verbena tea, dried oregano, apricot jam, cherry jam, tomato passata, dried apples, stewed pears and blackberries out of the freezer.
Gifted food: unwanted herbal tea (unwanted by the giver, very much wanted by me!), homemade chocolate chip cookies in a care package from one of Posy's friends (today Posy made a loaf of Rosemary Bread to send back), lamb bone for the dog, apple muffins that were left-overs from the cafe Rosy works at, rhubarb from my mum, and a date scone and two fruit buns from Mum and Dad (they have discovered that their local bakery is doing home deliveries!). An apple cake for Mother's Day from Rosy (I gave her a jar of dried apple rings from the apples from her tree).