• Live Simply to Simply Live,  Self-Sufficiency

    What about planting a lemon tree?

    Do you have a lemon tree growing in your backyard or front yard? I often wonder why people don’t plant a lemon tree in the garden. We bought our home just over three years ago and there was not a citrus tree in sight! The couple who built the house lived in it for around 20 years, but they never planted a lemon tree. At our previous house we planted citrus trees including a lemon tree. The family who bought the house are now enjoying picking lemons, just because we planted a lemon tree.   I like walking into the backyard and taking a couple of lemons off our tree…

  • Life Day By Day,  Live Simply to Simply Live

    The Rose

    The rose is a beautiful flower and many roses have a delightful fragrance. Years ago, I read a great quote about the rose. It said, ‘A rose does not preach, it merely spreads its fragrance’. I am reminded of the beauty of the rose as Mother’s Day is celebrated this Sunday. In many countries, including Australia, Mother’s Day is held on the second Sunday of May. This tradition began in 1908 when Anna Jarvis an American woman first held a memorial service for her mother, Ann Reeves Jarvis. Anna Jarvis wanted a day set aside for mothers to be honoured given her belief that a mother is the person who…

  • Life Day By Day,  Live Simply to Simply Live

    Tidying up

    How much time do you spend tidying up and putting things away? I seem to spend a lot of my time putting things away. If you are doing the same, don’t despair this is a good thing! I realised that having a place for everything and putting things back in their place keeps our place tidy. But there is more I can do! Therefore, I was pleased to hear about the KonMarie method. I am reading ‘The life-changing magic of tidying up’ by Marie Kondo. Kondo has had an interest in tidiness since a young child. The London Times said this about her “[Kondo] has positioned herself as Japan’s preeminent…

  • Life Day By Day,  Self-Sufficiency

    Do it yourself (DIY) Projects

    There are so many Do It Yourself (DIY) projects we can do around the home. This time of the year, heading for winter (in Australia), many of us are looking at our garden and planning a few DIY projects. My One&Only (O&O) however is doing more than looking and planning he has begun the autumn/winter pruning. We also reinvigorated a corner of our lawn and bought in some palmetto buffalo grass that does well in the shade. I even helped with shovelling the soil! Maybe you are like others I know and are now working out where to place that outdoor fire pit – a cosy way to enjoy the…

  • KJ's Kitchen,  Self-Sufficiency

    Possum or Quail for dinner?

    When you are planning your weekly meals do you have possum or quail for dinner? Those of you who are my “vintage” – a good age, like a good wine, will remember the TV Show The Beverley Hillbillies. Grandma Clampett’s favourite recipe was possum stew. At the time I could not imagine enjoying possum stew or pie for dinner! But times change and possums are on the menu, just like kangaroo and wallaby. Can you be a native animal lover and still eat wildlife? Can you enjoy a roast chicken dinner and yet still raise hens for eggs? What are the ethics of eating animals? Christine Korsgaard, the Arthur Kingsley Porter…

  • Live Simply to Simply Live

    Living the good life

    If you asked someone you know I am sure they would like to think they are living the good life. But what is the “good life”? It is not a one size fits all. A good life is different things to different people. On Thursday night I watched a program on SBS, titled “Filthy Rich & Homeless”. The program first went to air in June 2017. It followed five wealthy Australians who lived on the streets of Melbourne for 10 days and nights to share the experiences of homeless people. It was confronting and unsettling for the participants. I have not seen all the episodes however living as a homeless person…

  • KJ's Kitchen,  Live Simply to Simply Live

    Eating in or eating out

    What is your favourite thing to do – eating in or eating out? When I eat out it is not only about the food but about the ambience. In the winter I enjoy sitting near a fireplace and eating a meal. There are not many cafe’s or restaurants that have a fireplace. I do know of two in Toowoomba and when possible I like to dine near the fireplace. That is why so often in the winter I find we eat at home, near our fireplace. Eating out is popular with all age groups but there is an increase in the number of Millennials (those reaching young adulthood early in…

  • My Garden,  Self-Sufficiency

    Seed to Feed

    Last weekend my “One & Only” (O&O) and I went to a “Seed to Feed” Workshop. The workshop is part of the Toowoomba Regional Council Healthy Living, Change Project. The aim, through a series of free and low-cost activities, is to get people active and healthy. The “Seed to Feed” workshops have been very popular. We were on a waiting list and only attended due to a cancellation. We have been gardening for decades. My O&O is a great gardener. He has the happy knack of getting things to grow. Therefore, why would we go to a workshop that was mostly about plant propagation for the home garden. We went…

  • My Garden,  Self-Sufficiency

    Rotten Tomatoes

    Have you seen any rotten tomatoes lately? Really, nobody wants to see or smell rotten tomatoes. I only want the fresh, plump and juicy variety on my kitchen bench. A few weeks ago, there was an overabundance of tomatoes in the supermarket. I was buying these for $3kg. Yesterday, they were $7.90kg. In between, what happened? Were there that many tomatoes that they perished on the vine, while the next crop was still ripening? Whatever the price, tomatoes are regularly in our daily diet. As we consume so many tomatoes I will be pleased when we are growing our own. This will happen once the vegetable garden patch is sorted. Our…

  • Life Day By Day,  Live Simply to Simply Live

    The Versatility of Straw

    There are many things we can do with straw – it has so much versatility. One of these is to make a straw scarecrow. Years ago, when I lived in Maleny there was the annual scarecrow competition. It was the 1990’s and the Maleny Scarecrow Festival was one of Australia’s first and best scarecrow festivals. The Maleny festival ceased and the Mary Valley Scarecrow Festival took over. It is held every October (October 7 – November 11, 2017). This could be a great way to spend a weekend, soaking up the sights, tastes and smell of the Mary Valley (between Gympie and Imbil, Queensland). But there is much more you…