i actually love gardening but i dont have the time or money to do it usually. Plus we live in a rental so are limited in what i can do. But that didnt stop me re designing the front garden.

I tried to use drought tollerant natives as its a rental i needed to keep maintenance low. In order to do this i would have to rip out the horrid spikey bushes that are already there. I would make a path to the tap (on the right) using wood because as it is i have to walk over the tanbark through the spikey bushes. I would use large rocks as features like in Japanese design and a raised planted pot to add height. 

Ground cover would feature alot to fill in space but still give the feeling of openness. 


There is a path up the middle that kind of leads up the wall to the letterbox. At the moment its brick and not wide enough. I would make it crazy stone (not clean cut) but close together and add a stone step as the wall is slightly too high to step up comfortably. The large bush next to it has to stay as its a privacy screen so the planting around it needs to match but i havent got that far yet. I went for purples and grasses which will stay colorful year round rather than turning to twig bushes like the ones there now. 

 What do you think? I would love to have my own home to make doing gardening more rewarding. Oh well. One day.

How are your finances?

i follow the barefoot investor. His advice is down to earth and practical. Basically he says pay off your debts. Save 3months wages in a ‘mojo fund’ for emergencies. And invest in a slow moving stock. Im working on the first two right now. My mojo has about $300 and im trying to crash down that debt. But as well as this im looking into the what if scenario. He recently got a call from a man who was given 3 weeks to live and he wanted to make sure his family was taken care off. Something alot of us dont consider.

 If i die do i have enough insurance so that my family will be safe? No. My super pays $250,000 if i die which for most people isnt nearly enough. For a one child household it estimated i need $750,000 cover to pay the mortgage, living and school costs. To do that i have to get some blood tests etc because i had diabeties during pregnancy and im obese, so im putting it off 😒 

But i did sign the forms to contribute tomy super   today. Not much. Just $50 a pay. It comes out before tax so i actually get a nice tax break. I never did it before because im sure i wont live to 67 to use it (cancer and car accents are bound to happen) but i guess that if all goes well i will need the extra to have a comfortable retirement. The average person today needs about $40,000 to live off per year in retirement. Assuming you retire at 65 and live to 85 thats $800,000. I have worked for 10yrs and have about $100,000 in super which means assuming i continue on that path i should be fine. Assuming nothing like kids or illness makes me unable to work. But if i do die in a horroble crash i guess it goes to Rue so i will take the time to make sure i can live comfortably in my retirement.

How are your finances? 

Erin condren year 2

It’s no secret that i love these planners. I just recieved my new one in the mail yesterday and have noticed a few things already. The first is that the paper quality is thinner. The second is they removed the notes section from the monthly pages which is annoying beause i bought stickers especially for that area.

The next is that i know alot of people complained about ink marks on the paper and sent them back. I checked and i have them too but seriously people who cares. 

I ordered a pen holder this year because they dont clip on well the the spiral.

I have also ordered a heap more stickers and even my first set of washi tape ( no one sells it near me). People have also been complaining about the colors but again i dont care about that at all. Seriously who goes oh i dont like decembers colors so i wont buy it. 

Now to start the long process of transfering everything into it. Yay!

Things to tell a new mum

there are lots of things people dont tell you about being a mum. Here is a list of things i learnt or do:

  1. Woolies deliveries are a god send when you have to do a big grocery shop or have heavy items. Helps you stick to a list and a budget too.
  2. Pick a day of the week to cook up big batches and dont be afraid to give your kids toast for dinner occasionally.
  3. Its ok for them to go to bed in their clothes. Pajamas are just clothes after all.
  4. They will eventually go to sleep so you may as well make use of the time you have to be awake at 11pm by watching that show your partner hates.
  5. Cleaning can wait. If you are tired, the laundry does not have to go on today.
  6. If your kid brings you a book. Stop what you are doing and read to them. This goes for toys too. There will be time for tv and facebook later. 
  7. Make your kids like shows you can stand to watch 100 times. Rue likes Stepford Wives, River cottage Australia and The Cleveland show. 
  8. No one cares if they wear odd socks. Or pajamas to daycare. They are kids, no point fighting with them if they dont want to get changed. (School aged children are another matter)
  9. Try not to be precious about posessions/ clothes. They wont last forever anyway. If they get dirty or stained just shrug and move on. This saves alot of stress, trust me. 
  10. You can offer them the best food in the world, that doesnt mean they will eat it. Do your best and if you try three things and they refuse, hey, a biscuit is food. 

Kids table

for a while now i have been looking for a kids table. I hate all the ones i have seen and even some of the super expensive ones have been a bit blah. I knew what i was looking for. Something that didnt look like it was flat pack or plastic. I wanted wood and an interesting shape. I had no luck asking on facebook groups but thank fully finally found something that would work at the op shop. So for $8 i got this side table. 

As you can see its not in the best shape. The stain was flaking off and it needed some lovin. So i set off for bunnings to get some supplies. The lovey man there tried to find some cheap paint for me with no luck and even offered me his kids old table from their garage! Bless. I declined. I was set on my little table. So i settled for the tin of grey paint i had leftover from Rues cot. Sadly i had left it on the front porch for 2 years and naturally the lid had rusted closed. So i did what any self respecting person would do and jammed my screwdriver through the lid…what? You wouldnt do that?? 

We had paint! I used a very course sandpaper to take the whole finish off and strip it back to bare wood. It was suprisingly easy and only took about 10mins. The top was a little warped from wet that had seeped in over the years but i decided it added charm. I used two coats for the legs and three for the top as it would see the most wear. Thank goodness it was a warm day and each coat dried in no time. 

I even got a little sun in between coats!

I left it outside until nightfall then brought it in to avoid frost which we still might get even in the middle of spring. It was still a little tacky so i assume it should be left for a full 24hrs. But as i am very impatient i wanted to get a start on the design. I used a pencil to sketch it in (took me over an hour to find a pencil) then a dab of acrylic paint. A spray or two of sealant (which i should have done outside as its very smelly but thankfully its bedtime so the loungeroom has time to air) and i was done!i love how it turned out. Simple but pritty. I decided moths were more boyish than birds. 

I did debate putting some little brown mushrooms on too and still might but for now im happy with the moths. 

Table: $8

Sandpaper: $.96

Sanding block: $3.49

Paint: free

Paintbrush: $3.98

Time: about an hour to sand and paint and 30mins for the moths. 

All up a super cute custom table for under $20. 

Next step is to customise the chairs. Two for $5 from the opshop!  



well summer is sneaking up fast. This weekend it was a top of 18, next sunday is a top of 31! Im not prepared! I have only just worked out rues heater and layering technique. Now i have to work out how high the heater needs to be to not be too hot when he goes to bed but not too cold when he wakes up. Tonight its too warm on 2 at half temp but mornings have been quite cold so 1 turned it down to 1 at half temp. He is in shorts and a short sleeve top so hopefully he just snuggles with his blanket if it gets chilly. No idea what i will do later in the week when the over night low goes from 5 upto 12! Might have to even abandon the heater and leave the window open. Decisions, decisions. 

Trying to fix the house this year to avoid the scorching heat of summer. Getting blockout curtains installed for one because the metal blinds do nothing but the landlord wont let us take them down. Men. 

I also have a climber on my hands. We had one tumble tonight. Will have to keep a close watch on him to make sure he doesnt climb too high. You can see BDs hand in the first pic ready to catch him. He is so darn proud when he stands up though that i can help but smile with him. 


Spring cleaning

spring has sprung, well until tomorrow when its back to a top of 13. But it really makes me want to get up and give the house a spruce up. Its a rental so sprucing generally involves cleaning and rearranging furniture. But this year im going to take down the horrible useless metal venetion blinds and get some nice sheers and blockout curtains. Hopefully before the summer heat hits!! 

I also want to get a vegie patch started but discovered the bare plot i was going to use is now hip deep in grass so maybe a portible raised bed instead. 

Another project is rues big boy room ie cleaning out the spare room. Hope to be done by christmas, pic to follow. 

  This is another project…the worlds smallest pantry. Yeah wish me luck!

Fire season

fire season is creaping up on us again. Most people forget this as its also beach and christmas season. I feel alot better about this season than i did the last one. Rue is more self sufficient. I dont have to worry about how im going to get formula or bottles if the house burns down (we live next to a huge nature reserve). This year we have contents insurance, rue can drink and eat what ever he likes. But this is kind of a mixed post. The reason im thinking about this is that i just read my fave finance blog and last year he lost his house to bushfire and commented how a stranger saw him sitting at the bar, in his rural fire uniform having just lost his house and gave him a hug and $100 for food. Because you know what, he may have been financially well off, but right then he had nothing. 

Can you imagine. No clothes, no towels, no food, not even a hairbrush. Nothing. After the queensland floods a few years back another fave blogger retro mummy, got together and made a quilting drive to help those who had lost everything. A small gift maybe, but thats something handmade, something not brandnew bought with insurance money, its a new memory. Its more about the homely touches when you are rebuilding than the material things i think. Fingers crossed we arent in for a bad season, even though its forecast for one 😕