I just love seeing washing on the line. I think I might actually be obsessed. Whenever the weather is nice I wash as much as I can. Once all the obvious washing is done I often go looking for more washing to do. I know it’s crazy but I get a huge amount of pleasure from seeing the washing on the line. I think some of it is knowing that my washing is being dried for free and also the smell of the fresh washing coming in from the line. Not always so keen on putting the washing away but it’s great knowing I’ve got no dirty washing lying around. So till the next sunny day.
Monday, 27 September 2010
I love having John in our room and at times in bed with us. He has slept in our room ever since we bought him home from the hospital. I love hearing him breathe and the little noises he makes while he’s sleeping. It also means when he wakes up and is hungry or needs something we can hear him before he starts crying and gets too upset. He’s now 3 months old and sleeps through the night (has done since he was about 3 weeks old) but I’m not ready to put him into his own room yet, I so love having him in our room.
You would think having the baby in our room means that you’re constantly awakened and listening to their every move but I find that’s not the case at all. When we first bought him home I heard every sound he made and woke up whenever he whimpered but now I’m so used to him sleeping in our room something I don’t even hear him at all. It’s just a really loving feeling having him sleep near me. He does have his own lovely room and we will move him into that room I’m guessing before he’s 6 months old or when he needs to sleep in his cot whichever is first though at the moment I’m not quite ready to let him go.
He also loves sleeping in our bed. During the day when he takes naps he doesn’t really like to sleep in his bassinet he loves to sleep in our bed, in the playpen or in his helping stool. Sometimes at night he sleeps in our bed mostly because he’ll get hungry and I’ll feed him lying down and then we all fall asleep. Either myself or Mr Ecochick will wake up and put John back in his own bed. I have to say though it’s so lovely having John sleep next to me or in the crook of my arm. Feels so special.
While Mr Ecochick was away the last week for work John pretty much slept with me everyday night. I just loved it. Made me feel so close to him. John and I went away for a few days to a batch to visit my mother in law and we don’t own a portacot so again he just slept in the double bed with him. I know that everyone tells you not to co-sleep as it’s so dangerous however I personally don’t feel this is completely true. I mean when John is in bed with me even when I’m asleep I’m fully aware that he is lying there and feeling him breath and the warmth of his little body against me is the most amazing feeling in the world. Brings out the mother lion in me.
Monday, 20 September 2010
Breast is best. It’s kind of like a nation wide slogan more like a chant really. You see it printed on everything from websites to formula and said by everyone from antenatal classes to the plunket nurse. What I REALLY hate is the immense pressure put on new mums to breastfeed. There is so much pressure that mums who aren’t able to for whatever reason feel like total failures. It makes me so cross.
I’ve been breastfeeding John since he was born. We were lucky we had no problems in that department, however, loads of ladies I know had issues. They got really stressed and upset with the pressure put on them to “perform”. Like having a new baby to care for isn’t stressful and emotional enough. There is loads of support around learning how to breastfeed and continuing breastfeeding I feel that there needs to be a lot more information and support for woman who can’t.
Last week John cried a lot as he was so hungry it seems my milk supply has started to dry up and so now John gets a bottle as well as breast milk. It really doesn’t worry me, he’s now 3 months old and truth be told I never really enjoyed breastfeeding. I do it as it’s free, easy and no equipment needed. So now I breastfeed first and if (now more often) John’s still hungry he gets a bottle as well. It’s nice that Mr Ecochick can also feed John now and he just loves that. John loves his bottle he gets so super excited when he sees it. I think I prefer giving the bottle and now that this cow seems to be dry I guess that boat has sailed.
Tuesday, 14 September 2010
I love being a stay at home mum. It’s so fantastic to be able to see all the milestones my son makes such an honour really. I love watching him smile and coo. John’s a fantastic baby we’re so lucky. John’s been sleeping right through the night for weeks now which is just great. Sadly I’ve still got some complications from the birth which means I can't do all the things that I’d like to do with John but when John smiles it makes everything worth it.
Found a new blog today I love reading other people blogs. Hazeltree Farm's blog is about de-cluttering your home/ life as well as living a sustainable and simpler life. Reading other people’s blogs is great as I find reading what other people are doing in their lives challenges me to stay on track and also to learn new ways to live the way we want to live.
Hazletree Farm’s blog got me thinking - I think we’re on the right track but I know we can be more sustainable and we’re working our way there. I’m now more careful about what products come into the house and what we do with items when we’re finished with them. I hadn’t thought about the stuff already in the house, in the cupboards and in the draws. So I thought I would challenge us to de-clutter our house and get rid of some “crap” that is already in our place. I think I’ll do a room or a cupboard at a time and give things away on freecycle, take things to the hospice shop or if it’s valuable sell it on trade me. I think it’s time to get rid of some clutter in our home and not replace it with new things. So first to be chopped will be the linen cupboard.
Image from RAW
Image from RAW
Monday, 13 September 2010
When I was a child we had a sodastream machine. I always thought it was really cool that we could choose the flavour of our own drinks. Since then you didn’t really see sodastream machines around much so I had totally forgotten about them. I was reading about modern sodastreams on nature mom's blog and starting thinking about buying one for us. They are not very expensive new but I was determined to buy one second hand. As most people know I love to buy things second hand not only to save money but more importantly to buy a product that is already made and not specially made for me. So the hunt was on.
I spent a few weeks looking for a sodastream machine on trade me and was still unsure if I totally wanted to buy one. Then I saw one for only $50 I decided to buy that one. Now that we have one I just love it.
It’s so fantastic that when I feel like having something fizzy I don't have to go out and buy some, I can just go to the kitchen and whip some up. Sodastream save you a lot of money as one flavour makes 12 litres of soda. There are so many different flavours that you can buy now, they taste great and more importantly these flavours have half the sugar of regular fizz.
Sodastream markets themselves as being “active green” which I just love. The flavour bottles are completely recyclable as are the bottle used to make the fizz. It’s so great that I can drink fizzy and have no extra waste. Now I think I want a bread maker.
|Two weeks worth of food|
We go shopping about every 2 to 3 weeks. We find this saves us money and time as shopping can take about an hour so that’s an hour we get back every week. We generally make a shopping list but mainly it's so we don’t forget anything rather than to save money.
We are vegetarian and so don’t buy meat (obviously) so this saves us a lot of money which we can then spend on other sometimes considered more luxurious items. We buy our dry goods and general items from the supermarket and normally every two weeks we go to the morning market to buy our fresh fruit, veggies and free range eggs.
Friday is normally take aways night (hence all the pizza boxes in our recycling) so that’s one night we don’t cook or need food for. Though I think the main reason that shopping every few weeks saves us money is that we eat out of the pantry and freezer a lot more. Rather than just buying new food every week. Also we sometimes have to be a bit inventive with our meals if we haven’t been to the supermarket for a few weeks.We don’t normally have to go the shops on the off week though we might get speciality goods for dinner i.e. fresh bread or milk. Therefore the only money we really spend on food is the big shop we do once every few weeks. We find that only going to the supermarket every few weeks really works for us and I think it saves us money.
Wednesday, 8 September 2010
I found a great new blog the other day. It's called rubbish free. The blog’s about a couple who went rubbish free for a year or tried to reduce the amount of rubbish they put into the landfill. I’d love to be totally rubbish free but sadly I still like some of my conveniences. As stated in earlier posts we compost and recycle, but still have 22 rubbish bags a year. I’m always on the look out to reduce the waste we put into our rubbish bags. So when I found this blog I was very excited. They had some great ideas that we’ll introduce into our own lifestyle. More exciting was the store that they have where they sell some great products. I bought some bamboo toothbrushes and a new head for our wooden dish brush, these can both be put into our compost bin, though we may need a longer term bin as these woods will take longer to breakdown than normal compost.
I also bought two lots of reusable produce bags so that when we buy veggies or fruit we don’t have to use the plastic bags from the supermarket or market place. These plastic bags are recyclable but I feel it’s better to reduce any plastics coming into our house rather than just recycling them. These new produce bags are made from sustainable, organic, unbleached Indian cotton. Therefore when these bags are worn out they can be thrown into the compost.
|John and Hazel playing together|
A girlfriend came round yesterday with her daughter and the kiddies played together in the playpen. They loved lying next to each other and played really happily side by side though never interacting. Interesting that the children were so aware of our presence and interacted with the mums but seemed to have no awareness of each other. Was great fun to watch them play, coo and smile as they lay side by side in the playpen.
I love playpens, I spent a lot of time in one when I was a child and apparently I just loved being in the playpen and would fall asleep in the playpen so mum would just put a blanket over me. So far John seems to enjoy being in his playpen (or kiddie prison as Mr Ecochick calls it) and even rolled over for the first time when he was playing.
I think playpens encourage independence play and also allow children to have their own space. At the moment John isn’t moving far or going anywhere really but I still put him the playpen so that he’ll get used to being in it. Therefore when he is mobile it won’t be a foreign or scary place. So he can play in his place and I can go about doing daily tasks and not have to worry about what John is up to or where he is.
So when John fell asleep in his playpen today what did I do? That’s right I put a blanket over him and left him to sleep.
Tuesday, 7 September 2010
As in yesterdays post everyone knows that recycling is a good way to reduce your household waste but what about the electronics in your house. Our old/ unwanted electronics are sold on trade me, passed onto friends/ family or reused in our home.
My beloved computer and
new external hard disk.
My beloved computer is 6 years old and only came with a 40 gig hard drive, it was running really slowly and I never had enough space. So instead of discarding the computer and buying a new one we bought and put in a 150 gig hard disk. Now my computer runs so fast - it’s like having a brand new computer. We turned the old 40 gig hard disk into an external hard disk.
Mr Ecochick is a total geek (I love being married to a geek!) so has a collection of old computers in his office and from the parts of several old computers he made a new computer for his father to use. He also made himself a new computer by buying the new parts he needed for a new faster computer and adding them into an old computer case, so he made a new super fast machine to play games on for only about $700!
Now all I have to take to the e-cycling day run by our local council are 3 old computer cases and a few bits of completely out dated and un-reusable parts.
Monday, 6 September 2010
We all know that recycling is one way to reduce our rubbish and waste. I was so excited when a few weeks ago our local council changed their recycling capabilities from only recycling plastics 1 and 2 but now they can recycle up to 6. Super exciting. Before that I had been giving our plastics to my mother in law as her local council was recycling up to 6 and so now we can just put it out with our rubbish. Curb side recycling is fantastic and so easy. Just wrap up your plastics, tin, paper and glass and put them out on rubbish day. So fantastic as no need to go anywhere else to get our recycling done.
|Our recycling station|
We have our little recycling station in the laundry which consists of some plastic bags that I bought from the plastic box which have cans, paper and plastic written on them. We then put supermarket bags in these to put the clean recycling in. It’s getting harder to have plastic bags for putting recycling in as we normally bring our own bags to the supermarket and normally don’t take bags from shops when offered. Come rubbish day the recycling is all clean and ready to go. So recycling doesn’t become a big deal just pick up the recycling bags and put them outside.
We’re trying to reuse as much as possible, we have the compost bin and recycle all we can but still we put out a rubbish bag about every 2-3 weeks. I know that’s about 22 rubbish bags a year and we recycle we still have more rubbish than I would like. I'm still working on ways to reduce our general rubbish output. Any ideas would be welcome.
Sunday, 5 September 2010
We went out yesterday and had to bring a plate so I thought I’d make the famous lemonade scones. These scones are so easy to make and anyone can make them, hence that’s why they are never fail scones.
4 cups self raising flour
2 cups lemonade (made courtesy of the soda stream machine - I love that machine!)
1 cup cream
Preheat oven at 220°C
Place all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well.
Flour bench and roll out scone mix and knead well.
Flatten out to about 2-3cm thick.
Cut scones - I use a cookie cutter shape but a glass or cup would work too.
Place on a cold baking tray.
Cook for 10-15 minutes until light brown.
These are so cheap to make and are so yummy. We also took home made peach jam and strawberry jam. I just love peach jam, crazy that no companies make it. Was great to make our own jam this year, was the first time we had done it. Again so easy to make jam.
Peach + sugar = peach jam!!! Yummy.
Friday, 3 September 2010
We’re a no tv household and we love it. It’s funny when I tell people we don’t own a tv the first look on their face is can’t you afford a tv, then they realise that tvs are cheap. So they say why? It’s a personal choice. I mean I don’t see why it’s so strange that we don’t own a tv. I guess it’s different from the norm so I guess to most people it’s strange.
When I was growing up the only tv in the house was a 14 inch tv that lived in the spare room and was bought into the lounge on Saturday nights when we would have a family night. A piggy meal (eating from the coffee table rather than sitting all together at the kitchen table where we normally ate) and we watched a family movie or tv (ie Macgyver or Nightrider – showing my age there!). I loved Saturday night movie nights and piggy meals - they were so special and so much fun. Other than that we didn’t really watch much tv while growing up and I really don’t feel I missed out on anything.
Mr Ecochick was allowed to choose 3 programmes a week which they had to “book” in. So he feels the same why I do about tv viewing. We’ll be the same with our children.
We’re not all high and mighty. We still watch tv programmes, we just choose which programmes we watch and when we watch them. I love that we have no ad breaks and can stop and start programmes whenever we want. Mostly though I love that there is no ugly tv in our lounge.
Wednesday, 1 September 2010
|Miniature herb garden|
I’m an all or nothing kind of girl. A terrible trait really, but that's just how I am. Before John was born we were going to redo the garden and make a vegetable garden so we can grow our own veggies.
We were also going to make some planter pots to make a herb garden. We have a horrible concrete wall next to the house which is great at keeping the garden secret and also providing shelter but is rather ugly. I thought hanging planter pots would make it look nice as well as being practical. Though neither of these things have happened.
So we were just going to wait till summer to make our new garden happen, that means in the mean time no fresh herbs or home grown veggies. This was until a girlfriend came round and gave us rosemary and thyme plants in pots as a gift. These were promptly placed on the kitchen window sill. So now we have a miniature herb garden in the kitchen.
Another of her visits she gave us a mint and a parsley plant so the miniature herb garden is growing. It’s so wonderful to have these in the kitchen so now we can have fresh herbs in our dinner. First day of Spring today (woohoo!!!!) so I guess our outside garden will be made soon. Though might keep the plants on the window sill as they look so nice and are super handy for dinner time. So no need to be all or nothing!!