Choose life. Life is wonderful.

Saturday, 14 January 2017


How true is this statement!

It is so easy to say you love or care about someone but it is showing you care by actions that is important.

Last night we went to the Sunset Movies at the Wollongong Botanic Gardens with some of Peter's family. We went to see the movie 'Trolls'. Justin Timberlake was the voice for one of the main characters and I was interested to see in the credits that Russell Brandt and John Cleese also had parts.

 It was fun.  It did pour with rain just before the movie started, but we all managed to shelter under a picnic blanket and then retrieved some umbrellas out of the car.

It was a lovely evening. Peter and I will have to look into going another night and seeing a more adult movie. There seems to be a range of movies over the summer - child and adult; old and new. Click here if you want to find out more.

I always look forward to the  Crepe Myrtle trees flowering down in Balgownie Village, but they are not as prolific this year as last year.

I did spot this one in the Botanic Gardens last night.

It's not a great photo. I took it really quickly through sprinkling rain as we were heading up to watch the outdoor movie mentioned above, but it does give you an idea of how pretty they can be.

I intend to do some research on propagating crepe myrtles and see if I can grow them from a few cuttings taken from down in the village.

It is interesting watching the succulents I planted before Christmas start to take off. You can see the tiny little plantlets  starting to grow on the edge of a larger leaf. It really is fascinating watching them grow.

You can find some interesting information about propagating succulents here.

I put a vase of Vietnamese mint on my windowsill last week...

and in a couple of days it had grown these roots.

I was very surprised at how quickly they grew. So I decided to try propagating them and have put a few cuttings in pots.

I'm not sure how they will go. We have had a heatwave and they seem to be taking a while to get going.

I am moving a bookshelf and not looked at the books in it for ages. Some of them I can't even remember buying,
These are some of the books I found. I can't wait to start looking through them. I have just been too busy to read the books I have bought over the last couple of years and this year I am changing that.

The first book I am starting with is The Idiot's Guide to Plant Based-Nutrition by Julieanna Hever (2011,Penguin.) I can't even remember buying it, but I think I must have bought it on Amazon a few years ago. It is available here at Booktopia.

The more I read and learn, and look at my family history, the more I consider that a plant-based diet is the way for me to go. I consider myself a piscatorian as I eat fish but tend to avoid other animal products except for some cheeses like feta and Parmesan. I do eat meat to be polite if necessary.
I will let you know if this book is useful next week.

Meanwhile you may be interested in the recipe for some vegan fudge I have just made based on black beans and with no added sugar. In the photo below it has just been taken out of the freezer, which I think is the best way to eat it.

 I found the recipe here at Peachypalate. I made a double quantity. I used turtle black beans; date paste instead of Mejool dates, to make it a bit cheaper; and ordinary cocoa. It's not a terribly sweet fudge but Peter likes it and it is high in protein from the black beans. 

Even though it is holidays I administered 2 reading tests this week for young primary school students who were having some difficulty reading. As is usual with students with a reading problem, these two were not sure of their vowel sounds. Over the years I have had to teach 16 and 17 years olds their vowel sounds. One of the best things you can do for your children before they start school is have them recognise the 5 vowels: a,e,i,o,u, and the short sounds they represent.

If you would like some information on ways to teach your child vowel sounds check here,

I am aiming to post this blog on Saturdays and am hoping to become more successful at that as time goes on. I guess a day late isn't too bad.

Don't forget to check out Bean Stuff  to follow  my daughter's and son-in-law's gardening and creative adventures. They will give you ideas for living a rich life on a very limited budget.

Interesting sites

 Homeschooling in a VW van
Photo source
Click here  to read about homeschooling 3 children in a VW van.

Crazy windsurfers in hurricane waves
Photo source
Click here to see windsurfers surfing the waves in hurricane conditions.

Photo source
 I love the handmade bags and shoes at Fairysteps in the UK. Click here to see their beautiful creations.


  1. I love the photos of the succulents - i must get back to my succulent container making!

  2. Yes. Make some for my garage sale extraordinaire.

  3. Hi Again. I saw a wonderful exhibition of a crepe myrtle somewhere just a few days back. I will let you know where when I remember or see it again. Be careful with the Vietnamese mint, if it is anything like regular mint it will take over your garden. Judging by how quick the roots took , it will be just as bad. Put it in a pot. The movies on the lawn sound great except it is no good for me as there are no captions!:( I have started a new blog dedicated to my sock dolls, sock monkeys etc


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