Choose life. Life is wonderful.

Saturday, 21 January 2017


“…the true secret of happiness lies in the taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life…”

-- William Morris, “The Aims of Art,” in The Collected Works of William Morris

I like this quote. It goes to the heart of why I write my blog. I began writing about 5 years ago when I was feeling a bit down and I decided I was going to write about the good things in my life, even if they were just little things - ' the details of daily life.'

 From here I have had trouble with the size of the text. No matter how much I have tried to edit it, it remains the same.

My house has been painted blue for the last thirteen years. Blue is my favourite colour but I have decided I want it whiter and brighter.

Click here to visit Apartment Therapy with Janel and see the difference when an old room is painted white.

Peter has painted my back room white and I continue to spray paint furniture and other items white. I rig up a sort of booth on my back deck.

I have discovered that an undercoat of silver paint really seems to help cover cane furniture before giving it a coat of white.

This was a cane table I picked up from the side of the road and sprayed white.

 And this was an old cane set of shelves I had stuffed in a cupboard to store things on.

In the garden

I have a tiny strip of garden where nothing will grow. It bakes in the summer. Even nasturtiums won't grow there. So I decided the plant a few of the agave we potted up on this day.

My talented daughter Rhiannon made these sculptures many years when she was studying art at TAFE. I love them in my garden. (Peter isn't so sure! Although Peter isn't sure about my blog at all!)

I added a few toadstools I bought on special at the Reject Shop.

The lyrebird was back on my deck this morning.

How wonderful to have such a beautiful bird displaying its plumage and going through its repertoire of sounds. So many people I know have never seen a lyrebird.


This week I made a pink macramé owl from the string builders use.

Unfortunately it has a bit of a nasty look on it's face and two different sized eyes which I did by mistake. I made him to hang around my neck when I tutor. The company I work for asks tutors to wear black and white with hot pink accessories. It actually doesn't look too bad over a black top.

I sort of copied it from this picture, which I lost track of half way through.

I plan to make a bigger, more robust one for my front entrance if I can find the right colour material.


A recipe worth sharing is one I make for lamb and lentil soup. You can omit the lamb and to make it vegan if you wish.

Hearty Lamb and Lentil Soup   Serves 4


2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 onion
2 large carrots
2 cloves garlic sliced
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 450g tin of chopped tomatoes
1 1/2 cups of dried soup mix
left over lamb bone from roast
6 cups water
4 teaspoons of stock powder such as Vegeta


  1. In a large heavy based pot heat oil.
  2. Whiz onions and carrots in food processor (I use a mini) and add to oil, cooking until the onion starts to become translucent.
  3. Add garlic and paprika and cook for further 30 seconds
  4. Add the tin of tomatoes.
  5. Add the soup mix, lamb bone, water and stock powder.
  6. Cover and simmer for 1 1/2 hours or until lentils are tender and soup is rich and thick.
  7. Remove lamb bone and take off any remaining meat and chop finely and return to pot.
This freezes well.

Book review

Last week I mentioned moving some shelves and coming across a treasure trove of books, I had either not read for years or not read at all.

Once that caught my eye immediately was The Complete Idiot's Guide to Plant-Based Nutrition.

I will have bought this on line. There is a link in last week's post if you are interested in purchasing it from Booktopia. I will have bought this from Amazon some years ago, but have found the postage has increased too much to buy from there any more.

I am pleased to have come across this again. It gives a wealth of practical information including a section explaining where to obtain specific vitamins and minerals. It also has some useful and simple recipes.

While I still struggle with my weight for various reasons feel it is my plant based diet that keeps my cholesterol at a reasonable level without medication, and also it was replacing cow's milk and other dairy products with with soy milk that helped me sail through menopause without a single symptom. I have absolutely no scientific evidence for this except that soy milk has compounds that can mimic the effects of estrogen in the body. You can read more about that here. But there is an ongoing debate as to whether this is a good or bad thing, especially for men. This book mentions nothing about estrogen.

This book is a wealth of information if you want to start a plant-based diet. 

I do eat fish. This makes me a piscatorian. I also drink cow's milk and will eat other flesh when I am out, so as not to embarrass anyone, including myself. 

 This week I intend to read Walden by Henry David Thoreau.


Don't forget to go to Bean Stuff to see what my daughter and son-in-law are up to.

Interesting Sites


Photo source

Click here to see this horse enjoy playing with a squeaky toy


 2016 Comedy Wildlife Photos
Photo source

Click here to see more winners of the 2016 Comedy Wildlife Photos 

 Londond bridge transported to Arizona
Photo source
 Click here  to read about London Bridge being transported to Arizona

1 comment:

  1. I love your cane side table and the shelves should look just as good when they are painted. (if they already painted then the lighting didn't reflect the same whiteness)
    I might be able to help with Blogger issues when I come over!


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