Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Christmas Celebrations and Summer Holidays....
Hi Vintage Lovers,
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year everyone.
How were your celebrations ???

Ours is more a three day affair.....Christmas Eve is spent at home preparing, baking and decorating gingerbread houses ...... a Christmas Eve tradition for us. Christmas Day was also at our place, with family, eating way to much and finishing with a backyard game of cricket. Boxing Day is down at my parents farm for a big family get-together ....... it doesn't get any better !!!

This photo was taken early evening on Christmas Day .......... working off some of the Christmas food and drink.
As it is school and summer holidays for six weeks we have been down the beach lots and also quite a few backyard cricket games are being played and battled out already, and if we are not playing it the boys are watching it on T.V.
What summer is all about in Australia !!!

I have found a little spare time to pop out into the garden for a little bit. We bought another trailer load of mulch to top up the areas that had become a little bare in spots ready for our summer heat.

 I was also a little concerned about my newly planted hydrangeas, so we have created a temporary cover for them that I can pop over them on really hot days until the hedging grows. My sunflowers in the photo above, that I planted early November are growing fantastically and should be flowering very soon.

The planning has also started for the next stage of our Old Lady's renovations also ...... the kids are spending a few days down at Mum and Dad's, which has given Wayne and I a chance to sit down and work out the next plan of attack for renovations for the New Year. There is lots to be done ....... so, 2015 will be a very busy year.

The Christmas decorations will be packed up tomorrow ...... ready for a fresh start for 2015.......
........and I am ready for it.
Mel xx


Saturday, 13 December 2014

Welcome Summer and Christmas 2014
Hi Vintage Lovers,

Where has this year gone???
 Can't believe it is December and we are talking Christmas already !!!

My hydrangeas and agapanthus have started flowering.......which always spells Summer and Christmas to me.
As you know I've had a little break from the blog of late........due to the business in the lead up to the end of year.......lots of school presentations and concerts as well as Christmas preparations, Christmas baking and decorating of our old lady.
All my Christmas preparations and shopping is all done ...... but, I am certainly not ready to be thinking about and planning 2015......although there is a lot to be planned out for next year with the next stage of renovations for our old lady.

The kids are now on school holidays, so I am looking forward to enjoying the first weeks of the school holidays with the kids without rushing around.

I hope you find time to enjoy the last few weeks of 2014 with your family and friends and not get too caught up in the mad Christmas rush.
Mel xx


Wednesday, 15 October 2014

A new garden idea is hatched……..
Hi Vintage Lovers,

We have had a bit of a change of plans in the last week.
 After we finishing mulching the garden a few weeks ago.......we thought we would have a little break before starting the next house project, which is going to be the front rooms of our cottage, in the New Year.   

We were having a Sunday cuppa out on the church pew and we came up with the idea of extending the dry stone wall around the lawn area to include the outdoor area also. We have all the stone here that the previous owners had left......well hid under trees and behind the shed and store house for us. So we thought........why not give it a go.

The dry stone wall is already down the side of the lawn area that is on a higher level than our cottage.
Our idea is to continue the wall around the outdoor area to hide the cement slab.

We will move steps and create a semi-circle bed to match the semi-circle garden beds at the front of our old lady.........for a weeping maple with an English Box hedge eventually. The box hedging will continue around the outdoor area also. Then there will be steps on the other side of the area for access.

Now, it certainly will not be a quick project.......in reality it is a very big project and will be an ongoing project for a fair while. So our thought is to have this project as well as the front room project happening at the same time as, a lot of the work in the front rooms will be completed by the tradies first up.
 You know me, I don't like to sit still for long. J
Mel xx


Monday, 13 October 2014

Our rustic outdoor area……….

Hi Vintage Lovers,
Just popping by to let you have a look at how our outdoor area is coming along......it is still a work in progress......but the photos will give you an idea of what we are up to out there.

Now, back in March we found some old roofing iron in a salvage yard and we have used it to line the back wall of the area. We then thought the corrugated iron would also look fantastic on the shed doors.

We were even lucky enough to find some old corrugated iron with the manufacturer's stamp still visible.

We have started to hang old and vintage tools and implements from it..............
........... as well as others bits and pieces I have collected.

I would love to have some industrial lighting out there now (we only have a fluro light on one of the beams). Our Electrician is coming in the next week or so to finish off sorting out the shed wiring (we had some more power points put in a few weeks ago) and hopefully we can earth the outdoor area lights, then it will be safe to have the industrial lighting.
I have already found some in an antique shop.......that I would love to have.

Fingers Crossed J
Mel xx

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Playing in the Dirt……
Hi Vintage Lovers,

Ahhhh......spring is here......and you know how I love my garden and playing in the dirt, don't you ????? 

Well.....I have been doing just that and a lot of it of late !!!!!

We have been really busy creating new garden beds and planting hedging right around our old lady's borders, and over this weekend we have just finished mulching it all.

The plan with the hedging was to create a uniform look. All the fences are different shapes and sizes and the shed makes up part of the boundary fence, as well as dodgy makeshift structures (like tacked on carports, woodsheds and bbq areas) that needed to be removed.
It was going to be impossible to get it all looking the same without hedging.
So, 80 (yes.....80) hedging plants later......we have been busy little bee's.......we will have a hedge that will go right around our old lady's garden.......eventually.  

These pittosporums around the shed were planted back in April and they have doubled in size already.

Down the driveway side........

and down the other side of the garden.
We have also started our English Box hedging on this side.
 Friends of ours had this box hedging and didn't want it, so asked if we did........this was planned (Box hedging) to start next year so we will have different size plants along most of the borders. We  have just had an early start on it.

 We also bought a fruiting weeping mulberry for the area as well.
I love weeping trees.......so my plan is to buy a different weeping tree every year for a while.

We have also been re-designing the back area around the tank area (we are planning to buy another tank shortly) and have planted pittosporums around that area as well.

We are now finished planting in the garden for the year.
I am so happy with the way the whole garden is coming together........now she just needs to
Grow, Grow and Grow some more.

Mel xx


Wednesday, 1 October 2014

A window box full of herbs….
Hi Vintage Lovers,
Thought I'd pop by and give you a look at our kitchen window all finished off.

We ended up painting the window in an antique cream colour. 
We were keen to have all the windows in our old lady all timber but nothing ever goes as planned, does it ?????
The timber was so full of filler that it would have been impossible to leave it timber without the filler showing.
So painting was the only option.......but it has come up a treat and we are really happy with it.

We were then keen to find a window box (as the kitchen window looks straight out onto the carport we thought a bit of greenery would not go astray) for herbs, so we could just open the window and have all the herbs there for us to use.

Funny enough we found one closer than we expected - just around the corner from us at the garden centre.
It is an old wrought iron style made to match old windows and fits our kitchen window perfectly - we couldn't have asked for more and it looks fantastic.

Next month we are planning to buy another window box for the girls room (their room also looks out onto the carport area) to pop some flowers of their choice in. I am also planning to grow a glory vine along the far side of the carport (along the lattice in the previous photos) so the carport is a little bit easier on the eye, rather than looking straight at it with all the bins and fire wood that is stored there.
Hope you are having a fantastic week.
Mel xx


Thursday, 18 September 2014

Friday Favourites
Happy Friday and Weekend Everyone.

We are back to winter here - it certainly feels like it.
It has been so cold here - but not much rain and we need more rain.
The fire is on and I am sitting here typing this on the couch under a blanket.
 Better not pack those winter woollies away quite yet !!!

We are expected to have some warmer weather this weekend.......I am looking forward to some warm
sunshine - most definitely !!!

I wanted to show you some wooden pizza and bread boards made out of old floorboards (from an 1870's cottage) that I found for Wayne's birthday a few months back. He is the official homemade pizza maker in our house......my favourite is his blue cheese, proscuitto and pear pizza. Yumo !!!!
Don't they look fantastic !!!

 We will be working out in the garden over the weekend as I am keen to get the last of the hedging plants planted
 (photo's soon, I promise) as soon as possible before the weather heats up to much.

Have a fantastic weekend Friends.
Mel xx

Monday, 15 September 2014

Tuesday's Thought…..
"How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard"
Winnie the Pooh

Our beautiful Sally passed away on the 5th August, six weeks ago today.........she had a sudden and very severe stroke.
Our gorgeous girl didn't suffer at all and
the last thing she heard was my voice telling her that we love her so very much, and now she could go and chase as many sticks and balls, hoses and lawn mowers, whipper snippers and weeds, spades and shovels (she loved digging holes for plants in the garden), brooms and vacuum cleaners as she wants. As well as rounding up the sheep, cows or chooks, and chasing the quad bike up and down the paddocks with all her boundless energy and enthusiasm for ever and a day.

As you could imagine, it hasn't been the best few weeks for us.
I haven't felt like posting about Sal (or anything else for that matter - so I have lots to catch you up on in the next few weeks) before now, she was a huge part of our lives. For fourteen and half years she was my shadow - just about everywhere I went she went......so it will take a long time to get used to her not being around.

Mel xx


Thursday, 17 July 2014

Friday Favourites
Hi Vintage Lovers,

It has been bitterly cold here the last two weeks, we are all rugged up and have had the fire roaring most days and nights to keep our old lady toasty and warm.

The school holidays have been lovely and relaxing, lots of sleep ins, lazy breckies, movies (Frozen is still the movie of the moment in our house), a bit of winter baking and hot pots of tea thrown in.

Talking of baking, I found this little enamel gem in an
antique shop recently and couldn't resist it. It is rather a rare item these days (I have never ever seen one nor had the shop owner). As you know I have a very big soft spot for green and cream enamelware, so it had to come home to be added to my collection.
Unfortunately it didn't have the old bickie cutters still inside, that would have definitely been the icing on the cake........well, icing on the biscuits!!!!
I will just have to keep hunting for vintage bickie cutters, so that the set is complete.

It has certainly been enjoyable to have some down time with the kids, but next week I am planning to get out in the garden (very rugged up, I might add) and get my hands dirty.  

Have a fantastic weekend, Friends.

Keep Smiling J
Mel xx


Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Inspiration...comes in all shapes and forms.

Hi Vintage Lovers,
As it is school holidays here, I thought I would pop by and give you a quick look at the kids rooms and how they have decorated them. There is a bit of a story attached......so I will start right at the beginning.
It all started with a book, The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch (one of my favourite books and well worth a read if you haven't read it). Now I read this book about five years ago, and have re-read it quite a few times since then.
The book is written by a University professor who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer and only has a short time to live. He is asked to give a last lecture but instead of talking about death and dying speaks about using our time as best we can because we never really know how much we have left. It is about following our childhood dreams, about seizing every moment and doing what makes us happy.
About a year ago I was keen for our oldest daughter to read the book. After much persuasion she agreed to read it. She is a huge reader but The Last Lecture didn't quite fit under her genre.....so she needed a bit of talking into reading it. To her surprise, she did quite enjoy it and got a lot out of it......but the thing she couldn't stop asking us after reading it was if she could paint her walls with things that mattered to her like Randy talked about in the book. As a teenage boy, his parents allowed him to decorate his room by painting the walls with things that mattered to him. How could we say no ??????
As our cottage is to be completely renovated anyway we decided to use this inspiration and allow our kids to do the same for a bit of fun before we start renovating their rooms.
Here's what they came up with.......

Our girls share a room. So they have quotes from favourite books and movies. 

Our youngest is very much into star wars at the moment (as you can see with all the star wars Lego on his chest-a- draws).......


 ........so he decided to paint The Jedi Code above his bed.


The kids have more painting planned for over these holidays. 
I have a feeling it will be an ever changing mural until we start the renovations in their rooms. 

Mel xx


Sunday, 6 July 2014

 A Thought for Today…

Are you somebody who sees a weed or a wish ???????
I am a wish person (or try to be most of the time).
Isn't it funny as kids we all see wishes and the as adults we most of us see a weed.
Perspective is a powerful thing......isn't it  ?????

Have a fabulous week friends.
Mel xx



Friday, 4 July 2014

Friday Favourites
Hi Vintage Lovers,

It's been a busy week here.
Lots of home jobs were on my to-do list that needed to be done before the kids are on school holidays.
Can you hear my sigh of relief ???? (I am sure you can !!!!). I am rather tired (not to mention the kids are too) and really need a break from the daily routine.

I am looking forward to time to make a decent pot of tea (or two). I know it doesn't sound much, it is one of my little luxuries in life. I don't like to rush when I have a pot of tea, so I usually use tea bags day to day (as life is always busy - especially with kids) and only have pot tea when I have the time to enjoy the ritual.

We bought a new kettle last month which will make the pot tea ritual all the more enjoyable.......

......... a gorgeous Aga kettle. 

I have always wanted a reproduction vintage kettle. But, after we bought Agatha for our old lady the Aga vintage kettle moved up to the top of my wish list. So, when Mother's Day came around, I made a special request for an Aga kettle. It just took a little while to come in after being ordered....all good things are worth waiting for, aren't they ?????

As you can see she looks perfect on Agatha or on the wood stove in the kitchen.......

....... a wonderful addition to our vintage kitchen.

Have a great weekend.
Enjoy Yourself.
Mel xx

Monday, 30 June 2014

 Finally, the new old front gate……..

Hi Vintage Lovers,
My apologies (I am a little red faced) for being absent from the blog for a few weeks -
the craziness of life took over so the blog has been rather neglected of late.
We have quite a few jobs under way at the moment but we have had holdups on each and everyone of them which is rather frustrating to say the least. Our front gate that we thought would be up and erected within a couple of weeks .....silly us.
If you remember, we found the old gate in a local second-hand shop and couldn't resist her. She is a Simpson Pioneer gate.........but before we could pop her up she did need a bit of TLC......
........there was a missing section on the gate (we came to the conclusion that the poor thing had been run over by a tractor or something) that had to be repaired, but we needed to find an old bit of pipe that matched in diameter
(not an easy job).
My dad ended up finding one for us and welding it in.
 Thanks, Dad. You are one in a million. J

Then she was off to the powder coaters which then took longer then we expected.
So eights weeks later we have our old gate back and have erected her on the front driveway, so that we could pull down the carport gate and other side fence, to make the garden one complete area.

 Here's a couple of old pics of the carport gate and other side fence........ 

and some pics after we had taken down the gate and side fence -
it looks so much better and bigger.

Our next jobs are to finish planting the hedging plants around the garden borders.......if the rain holds off just a little while....... lets hope so. 
Have a great week.
Mel xx