Saturday, November 29, 2008

Seven Things Week 65

IN (12)
1 wallet (brand new $9 Vinnies)
1 laundry trolley ($10 garage sale)
3 sewing patterns ($1 Aussie Junk)
1 glass ($1 Aussie Junk)
1 tupperware container ($1 Aussie Junk)
1 sewing pattern (50c Vinnies)
1 knitting pattern (50c Vinnies)
1 knitting magazine (subscription)
1 spinning magazine (gift)
1 bag spinning fibre (EGMTK's fibre club)

OUT (39)
1 wallet - gifts & donations
1 laundry trolley - gifts & donations
12 balls wool - gifts & donations
1 pr tweezers -bin
2 towels (for Mum to make into a bathrobe for my birthday)
9 buttons (5 for my bathrobe; 4 for last week's sarongs -forgot about them until this week)
2 sets knitting needles - gifts & donations
1 laundry basket - gifts & donations
8 clothes hangers - gifts & donations

SIAA (2)
2 blanket squares

IN 12
OUT 39

Friday, November 28, 2008

Frugal and/or Free - Sit On It

Date: Sunday 15 November
Place: Second-hand Sunday participant, Kaleen
Objects: Concrete surrounds and two vintage kitchen chairs.
Investment: $0
Notes: For the thrifty gardener, this concrete edging is fantastic. I was given a whole heap of it a couple of years ago which edged my driveway. Makes mowing easier, too. Had to bring this home when I saw it - Dad would be proud. The chairs are for my front porch and may not last long, but they were free and sometimes I just have to have something for the sake of it.

Also on I Op Therefore I Am - ACT.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Frugal and/or Free - White wash

Date: Saturday 22 November
Place: Garage sale, Ngunnawal
Object: Lightly used laundry trolley
Investment: $10
Notes: Replaces the expensive and very short-lived version from Howard's Storage World bought a few years back and which only lasted a couple of months. The problem - welded supports which kept breaking. This one has the metal supports through the frame and should last MUCH longer.

Also on I Op Therefore I Am - ACT.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Frugal and/or Free - Second Hand Sunday 20 November

After an early night and a leisurely breakfast, we hit the streets of Gungahlin for Second-Hand Sunday. We are really looking for a decent two-seater sofa, but we set out with open minds and hope in our hearts.

We score within the first hour - a 4 burner BBQ with gas bottle. I stand guard while the Old Flame returns home for the trailer. The owner is downsizing and is pleased to get rid of her almost new bbq. We've been discussing the need for a BBQ for months and have even spent time in retail outlets checking them out. This will do for now and suits the budget very well indeed.

We also picked up a crock for vinegar making (still looking for a vinegar mother - anyone?), a box of books, a Microsoft ergonomic keyboard, some concrete garden edging and two 50s dining chairs.

We left this fella behind. Poor Humpty looked lonely on this hideous couch. It's not obvious, but his eyes and belt buckle are gorgeous paua shells and he nearly came home for those alone.

Date: Sunday 15 November
Place: Second-hand Sunday participant, Amaroo
Object: Nearly new 4-burner BBQ.
Investment: $5
Notes: The BBQ was free but the Old Flame had to buy a lid for it, so Aussie Junk got $5. The BBQ came with the gas bottle (not pictured). We've had 2 meals off it and there's still gas in the bottle. We suspect it had been used no more than 3 times before we got it considering it's general state of cleanliness.

Also on I Op Therefore I Am - ACT.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Frugal and/or Free - Release the Moths

Date: Saturday 22 November
Place: St Vincent de Paul op-shop, Gungahlin
Object: Brand new Oroton wallet (kanagroo leather, buttery soft)
Investment: $9
Notes: Replaces the $3 op-shop wallet which I've had exactly a year

Monday, November 24, 2008

Stylin' yarn

Interesting article in the November 2008 Country Style (the magazine formerly known as Australian Country Style) on Katherine Wood and Burrawool .

I haven't tried Burrawool, but KMS has and she loves it . I'm trying to curb my desire for this yarn but it fits so well with the Boodle Development Policy (local, indie, chemical free, only comes in natural white, black or grey etc...) that it's hard. If we just happen to be driving through Robertson at any time, it will mean I was meant to have some of this fibre.

Country Style is available at the Dickson , Tuggeranong and Woden branches of the ACT Public Libraries. And you can still buy it in the shops if you're so inclined.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Seven Things Week 64

IN (60)
4 Tupperware containers (garage sales - total spend $3)
1 cotton blanket (gift TSS)
1 saucepan ($10 at Salvos half price sale)
46 balls yarn - Patons Jet at $3 a ball and some Bendigo 8ply from Vinnies. All of this is destined for Mum's charity knitting, but it will live here for a while first, so I thought it best to count it in.
2 chairs (free Second-hand Sunday)
1 CD (gift TSS)
1 extendable arm ($2 fete)
1 hat for the races ($10 Vinnies)
1 lipstick (gift TSS)
2 prs reading specs (new - I can see, I can see!)

OUT (5)
4 placemats - GIFTS & DONATIONS
1 table runner - GIFTS & DONATIONS

1 scarf
2 sarongs (from the sheet TSS gave me last week)

IN 60


Saturday, November 15, 2008

Seven Things Week 63

IN (80)
1 bra - gift from Mum
57 balls of yarn - gift for charity stash via TSS
2 jumpers for unravelling - gift for charity stash via TSS
2 circular knitting needles - came with the charity yarn
1 suitcase - it's what the yarn came in
1 sheet - gift from TSS
1 bag spinning fibre - EGMTK fibre club
15 balls yarn from a Ravelry destash, but it matches yarn in boodle and now I'll be able to make four garments (sometime) instead of stashing lovely yarn indefinitely.

OUT (30)
11 knitting patterns - GIFTS & DONATIONS
1 jumper - GIFTS & DONATIONS
3 cardboard boxes - RECYCLING (yes, I have a hoard of cardboard boxes which I keep thinking I'll use but which I never do - these were too big to be useful so I dropped them off to the local paper recyclers, there are more to come once the (mostly) documents that have been dumped in them are decanted and filed.)
6 hair dyes - BIN (don't really want out of date chemicals near my head - bought on sale more than 3 years ago and not a single one ever used)
3 big Australia Post boxes- GIFTS & DONATIONS

SIAA (1)
1 beanie

IN 80
OUT 30
Nett OUT -50


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Maintain the Rage!

No fancy pants Robbie Burns titles today - no time to be waylaid by his poetry.
TSS has blogged about our little trip to OPH for The Dismissal tour.
The Dismissal was 33 years ago yesterday and remains an enduring memory of my childhood. I was in 4th class at a Canberra public primary school and remember the feeling of anticipation, dread, grief and anger that emanated from teachers and other adults. It was a confusing and exciting day for a 9 year old.
Because TSS needs more of an understanding of Australian history, because I'm a history and politics junkie, and because the Old Flame is a good sport, we arrived at OPH and paid the family rate of $5 entry between us (ha!) instead of $2 each.

We got to re-enact the journey of the day throughout Old Parliament House. The House of Reps, the Senate, the Cabinet Room, the Prime Minister's Office, the Press Gallery etc.
The Old Flame as Sir John Kerr

I was seriously thrilled to actually to be in those places, particularly the House of Representatives - the people's house.

But I was more thrilled to do this -

Knitting the the Senate, in the public galleries of which I was made to surrender my knitting - I was only 8 or 9 at the time.

TSS & I knitting in the House of Representatives. I deliberately took green knitting.

And triumphant with the (replica) mace topped with a TTWC which TSS knitted during the tour.

At least four guides told me that knitting was forbidden in Parliament House. Yeah, I know. If you live long enough, you win!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

The liquid fire of strong desire I've pour'd it in each bosom

Has everyone see this book - am I the last to know about a fabulous offering from and Australian designer and blogger? Doesn't matter - it's now top of my wish list.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Seven Things Week 62

An odd week with a holiday on Tuesday and something on every other night - not a lot of time to concentrate on divestment, but a little progress was made.

IN (5)
1 uncut sewing pattern 50c @ Aussie Junk.
2 tops - hand-me-downs from Mum
1 pr jeans - $3.50 at Vinnies
1 pr pantihose - $2.50 at Vinnies

OUT (20)
16 balls and cones of wool. There was more than 16 x 50g equivalents in this lot, but it came down to weighing and doing the sums or actually getting it out the door. GIFTS & DONATIONS 3 tops - GIFTS & DONATIONS
1 pr stockings - BIN

Nothing finished this week.

IN 5
OUT 20

Friday, November 07, 2008

My tocher's the bargain ye wad buy

Knitting accessory at Aussie Junk, Mitchell.

There was a box of about 36 of these yarn holders at Aussie Junk in Mitchell on Tuesday morning if anyone's interested. Sorry, forgot to ask a price, but that tends to change from person to person anyway.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Simply cannot believe it's THAT time of the year again - we're picking and choosing our subscriptions and pre-paying to save a bomb.

New this coming year will be a seat at the Brumbies home matches. My Old Flame has been a ticket holder for years, and I'm a bit partial to a game of footy, coming from an ecumenical sporting family where, although AFL is the family creed, we are just as happy at Union, League or soccer. Now that I think of it, the first rugger match I ever attended was in 1983 to watch the Old Flame play. He remembers it was a bitterly cold day, I remember his thighs - funny how people remember the same event differently. ;)

Film will be taken care of by the ANU Film Group again ($60 for movies March-November. TSS is about to calculate exactly what we spent per movie this year, but it's about $1.75) but we don't pay that until February.

On the performing arts side, we're renewing for The Song Company - only three concerts in Canberra, but such bliss!

And on last night we attended the 2009 season launch for the Canberra Theatre. Yes, it really was a year ago we attended the last one . I was pretty uninspired by this year's line up, but next year - here are my picks:
  • Bell Shakespeare Company's all women version of The Taming of the Shrew and
  • Sydney Theatre Company's production of Elling, which was so eloquently and enthusiastically presented to us by Pamela Rabe.

The minimum number of shows for a sub is four, so I'll just hope the budget is able to sustain these choices at the time.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

A braw new naig wi' the tail o' a rottan

Yesterday we toddled out to Thoroughbred Park for the Melbourne Cup Day meeting* because even though I'm not a gambler

  1. I enjoy our cultural traditions
  2. the Old Flame enjoys the races and a flutter (it's where my dour Scots Presbyterian heritage runs up against his riotous Irish Catholic one) and
  3. because free entry to the race meetings is a perk of our rather expensive membership.
One of the traditions of The Race in Melbourne, is champagne and chicken partaken of in the carpark. We honoured the tradition by consuming an Asian inspired mango, noodle salad with mint, basil and bean shoots and honey soy marinated chicken in the members' outdoor seating area. The couple opposite us suggested that at $7 for a scant steak sandwich from the Lions stall, we had the right idea. We did buy a couple of glasses of champers, though.

There were horses; bookies; women in skimpy clothes, ridiculous hats, fake tan and, later, sunburn; men in suits with silly shoes and ties; champagne and knitting.

I bet what I could afford to lose which was $5 each way on a nag that came in 19th out of 21 but still came home much better off than most in attendance. insert smug Reformed look here

Actually, I overspent the $20 budget by $1.50. A round of champagne for 3 cost $16.50.

We were kindly and generously befriended early in the day by a woman who invited us to share her table in the members' bar. She's a horse owner and also "owns" her table for the year. As there is a ballot for unowned tables for major meetings like this one and seats are $50 a pop, it's a fortunate person who gets bottom real estate in the airconditioned comfort of the members' bar. Our new friend's table was right on the finish line so we had a grand view of the local races as well as the telecasts of the Flemington carnival and other interstate runs.

And we got home in time to enjoy a bit of gardening.

*We get the day off in Canberra because our local Labor Government wanted to shaft the Federal Howard Liberal Government for introducing industrial legislation that made our union picnic day illegal and the majority of Commonwealth public servants work in Canberra, making it one fewer productive days for the Federal Government. It may or may not change back now that Kev runs the national show and if when that legislation is repealed or amended. hint, hint Kev

Monday, November 03, 2008

But we hae meat, and we can eat

Tomorrow is Melbourne Cup Day. In Canberra this marks the start of the Christmas party season.

I approach Christmas with mixed feelings. Celebrations will be different this year. We'll be starting new traditions which is lovely, and farwelling old ones which is sad.

Some things don't change, though, and that will be the menu Chez Taph. Traditional baked meal (ham, pork and turkey with as many veg as can fit on a plate) and Christmas pudding for afters with an alternative of fruit sorbet for the gluten and/or dairy intolerant among us.

Apologies if this is too soon for some of you (or too late), but I bought our Christmas turkey and joint of pork today. I feel more organised now.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Seven Things Week 61

IN (5)
2 vintage Patons patterns ($1, garage sale)
1 Alice Starmore knitting book ($3, garage sale)
1 Two Fat Ladies cook book (20c, garage sale)
1 ball vintage Patonyle. (gift from TSS)

OUT (18)
6 balls yarn (returned to K-Mart because they charged me full price on them, not the reduced price)
12 balls yarn GIFTS & DONATIONS

2 TTWC s

IN 5
OUT 18