Wednesday, 6 January 2021

Summer storms and a new year

 As I type this blog post tonight it is raining heavily as the severe storms that were forecast passed through our area late this afternoon and, according to Weatherzone, 33mm has fallen at the airport. I haven't been outside to check our gauge but will do that in the morning and I think it will be quite full judging by the sound on the tin roof. It has been very muggy here which is not all that usual for us but hopefully our farmers are getting some of this liquid gold. I have been learning how to loom knit and have finished my first scarf which will be donated to the homeless once the cold weather hits this year. 

I find that knitting with the long loom isn't quite as easy as it is on the round loom but I think that once I get used to the different stitches it won't be too bad. 

Casting off

I had to watch a lot of YouTube tutorials to find out how to cast on and off and the casting off process is in the photo above. I found some helpful videos such as those from The Crochet CrowdWambui Made It and Kimberly Carrigan. Of course there are a lot more tutorials online but I find it is easier for me to stick to just a few different methods otherwise I get confused. I found that when I started soapmaking as well. 


Last month I discovered I had a pineapple growing finally...after about four years!


I think it will still take a while before it is ready to pick and I can't wait to taste it. 


The young chap up the road has them growing in his north-east facing garden and he has picked quite a few over the years after the initial slow start. 

I must tell you something funny that happened to me after Christmas. One of my lovely friends gave me this amazing diffuser which has been made from a seed pod from the Banksia Grandis tree. We thought it smelt a bit like Eucalyptus oil when I took it out of the wrapping paper. 

So I read on the back of the above card that you just need to top up the oil when it is needed. I thought that putting lavender oil in it might be nice as that usually induces sleep. Taking a look at the pod I guesstimated that it would take a couple of bottles of essential oil to fill it up and I did have some DoTerra lavender oil that I hadn't used as it is too expensive to put in soaps. They are small bottles so I thought a couple of them would do the trick. So I got out my trusty funnel and started pouring only to find the oil running out all over the pod. I then realised that there must be an internal tube that the oil is put into. Duh!

I remembered a soapmaking friend telling me to be careful when using essential oils as they can damage surfaces so I grabbed an old KFC lid that my hubby had brought home as he is fond of KFC and placed it underneath the pod which I then banished to my son's old room as it was quite pungent by that stage and probably wouldn't induce sleep but unconsciousness. I shut the door quite firmly :-)

A couple of days later I dared to open the bedroom door to check on the pod and discovered that the oil had eaten through the lid and....wait for it....the recently painted shelf in the room. Dear me! Just as well I asked the painters to put some leftover paint into bottles for me to do touch ups on the paintwork when needed. A lesson learned. Now I have a saucer under the pod which is starting to smell a little more normal. 

This was a great gift and if you would like to buy one for yourself or a friend check out Banksia Gifts Australia. If you read the instructions online as I should have done you will learn that you first have to let the eucalyptus oil dissipate and then add only 1ml or so which is topped up regularly. 

I do hope that anyone reading this from overseas is keeping safe during the pandemic. The number of COVID cases in some countries is staggering. We think it is bad here when there are three or so who have been infected. We can tend to become too blase unfortunately but I am still careful when I am in a shopping centre and try not to get too close to anyone and use hand sanitiser regularly. If we had outbreaks like in other countries I think I would just stay at home as much as possible seeing as I am an old girl ;-)

By the way... Happy New Year!


  1. Here in the UK we imagine the weather where you are is amazing this time of year! I guess nothing is guaranteed. Growing a pineapple seems very exciting, what fun!

    1. Well my hubby just bought ten pineapple tops at the market so in four or so years we might have some more 😁 Stay safe and well over there.

  2. Happy New Year to you...pineapples are the one thing that I think we all take for granted. It takes 2 years to grow a pineapple and we can cut it up and eat it in 20 minutes...that most definitely is "slow food". Have a great week.

    1. Kathy it takes longer to grow them here being cooler than Brisbane.

  3. Place some large rocks around your pineapple, if you want to speed up growing. Especially as the colder weather arrives, they will hold onto heat and even ward off frosts, if exposed to a lot of sun the day before. They should be ready to pick around six months, after the flowers appear on the fruit. But what a grand present you received in the natural oil defuser. So ingenious, pretty and using what nature has already made.

  4. Thanks for that tip, Chris. A friend up the road has them growing near a brick wall for the heat.


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