Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Tuesday, June 18, 2013
I like my kitchenalia country-style and I have been hankering after more of these stiff old linen tea towels since I found my first last year. They never come up in the op-shops I frequent so I finally bit the bullet and saved 'linen tea towel' as a search on Trade Me, New Zealand's answer to Ebay. Whilst not as cheap as I would have liked ($17, plus p&p) they are exactly what I like, so were therefore worth the extra expense.
We used them when we made farfalle on Sunday, whilst it rained and rained and the drive flooded, and then the street. I fed and caught the pasta strips, Claud cranked. Then we pinched and pressed to make
The plus-sized model of the tea towel world, they also make a rustic-chic table runner, polish glasses beautifully and make for excellent, post-cooking child butterfly wings.
How do you like your kitchen gear? Shiny and sleek or shabby chic?
Have you posted about your second hand shopping antics lately?
Do share if you did so we can all come and ooh and ahh! Just click on the linky below...
Monday, June 17, 2013
Claudine-The rare New Zealand pink hobbit: plus camera ectoplasm, at last!
Fin-I have been teaching him sign language for milk, but I think this was a fluke. However he did want milk. He always wants milk.
Fins hat- part of a wonderful birth gift from and made by Amy at Seven-Stitches
Far Out! It's week 24/52 of the Portrait Project at Che and Fidel!
My favourite from last week's submissions? The wee tree hugger at MilkPleaseMum
Saturday, June 15, 2013
Tuesday, June 11, 2013
Since Fins arrival we've instituted a tick chart for Claud, to encourage behaviours that make life easier for me with two. Go to sleep by yourself, tick. Wee in the toilet instead of your night nappy, tick. It has also provided me with an out from the slippery tooth rot slope of 'if only you would please tidy up your things I'll give you a marshmallow/lollyfromthejar/another biscuit' into which I was teetering. It's worked well, Claud had no difficulty with deferred gratification (some she spends on the weekend, some she puts in a 'tick money box' to save for "big stuff"). However, the expense vs the $2 shop landfill-crap conundrum came up quickly. Again op-shopping has been our salvation in providing some inexpensive stuff-of-child-excitement we can wrap and she choose from the 'goodie bag of mystery' trading in her ticks.
Most of our child-bribe finds have been of the sort only a child could really appreciate; an avon bottle shaped like a ballerina, a wiggles DVD; but a few have been of the 'I really want it cause it's kinda cool, but we have no where to put it and it's not our taste, so lets give it to Claud' type.This cartoony, vintage Japanese version of the traditional German folk art weather chalet ($2) is a case in point. You would know if your nana had one of their irresistible allure to children in their traditional garb. Add a pink Fisher Price-esq paint job you have near hysteria (and thats just me!).
According to this article about a Meteorologist who collects weather houses, the only information I could find on weather houses in my split-second google search, there are a few Japanese ones around though they were primarily made in Germany and Switzerland. This one, like those is a functioning hygrometer weather forecaster. To our eyes though its really just another, itty-bitty, doll house!
are you an Op-Shop Show-Off? or more modest about your superior second hand shopping abilities?
do you like to linky?
it’s charitable, green, cheap, exciting, fun, nostalgia inducing, potentially lucrative and often just plain necessary. whatever your reason for second hand shopping we’d love it if you joined us on Tuesdays here at blackbirdhasspoken.blogspot.com for Op-Shop Show-Off, a linky open to all, all week, to link up a blog post about any aspect of your second-hand shopping life. tell us your op-shopping philosophy, or divulge your secret hunting techniques. let us know about your wants, or skite (English translation= “show-off “) about your amazing finds. review the best op-shopping spots in your town, or request or give information on your fascinating finds, you’ll always be talking to an appreciative audience here.
How to link up?
1. post your second hand shopping related blog post.
2. link to Op-Shop Show-Off in your blog post, so your blog readers can come over and peruse or post in the linky too.
3. scroll to the bottom of my latest Tuesday Op-Shop Show-Off post and click on the linky tool, then follow the three easy steps.
4. don't forget to leave me a comment to let me know you linked up.
5. have a look at some of the other linkers posts/blogs, they're all people after your own heart!
6. grab the Op-Shop Show-Off Button from my sidebar to decorate yours (paste the code into a HTML gadget under the 'add a gadget' part of the layout section in blogger and save).
Sunday, June 9, 2013
Fin-Watching, always watching; wide-eyed and wonderful.
Week 23 of 52 weekly portraits for the portrait project at Che and Fidel.
*My favourite from last week? Preeti's incredible silhouettes of her boy
Friday, June 7, 2013
We were sucked from our house by a hot burn of sun and heard the park before we saw it, ringing with high-pitched happiness. Claud made a bee line for the swings and we sat under the old oak, lulled by the warmth and the final drifting leaf falls; red, yellow, brown; then puzzled by the orange leaves that just carried and carried, with the gravity resisting gait of butterflies...
In an ordinary park, in an ordinary town, extraordinary things abound. A cluster of overwintering monarchs butterflies close to invisible in their diapausal pose brought vigorously, high-viz alive by a day of sunshine, like us. Legions of them glided between trees shadow-casting and eye-catching; the park population not engaged in swing warfare were made giddy and gape-mouthed by the sight of it.
It was easy to pick the over-wintering Fir tree, now a tourist spot with moochy teenagers, the saturday morning park-dad mafia and iphones with human attachments all flitting around it's skirt hem pointing upwards. I stood neck-craning and exclaiming alongside a nana-with-child, who'd nipped home to consult her encyclopedia and was now holding forth on monarchdom, eyes upwards. Meanwhile, child-with-nana picked up the longest stick in the vicinity, stood on her tippy-toes and swang a couple of just-short-of-the-mark sweeps at the cluster before, in a surprising burst of speed stick and girl were yanked away and nana slunk off under the rolling eyes of the appalled crowd.
Their spot was taken by a lepidopterist no less, who took what I presumed was a rare bask in the sunny enthusiasm of the crowd himself. Free and easy with his knowledge, his amazed awe was reserved for his Japanese home-stay neighbour who had kept silkworms in his youth but flinched, revolted each time butterfly or shadow flapped near him.
Then in barged a yellow admiral, furious, tailing and chasing the monarchs despite their size and number, in a territorial war he was destined to lose. Monarchs apparently choose the same tree year on year to over-winter in; the mechanism by which the longitude and latitude of these trees is communicated from short-lived monarch to short lived monarch just one of the many wonder-inducing mysteries of these bright creatures.
We called Claud over to take a look at what we couldn't stop looking at, orange and good, refreshing our eyes after grey wet winter weeks. Her face was all mutiny as she gave up her swing and stomped over. She looked up, picked up the second biggest stick in the vicinity: and standing up on her tippy-toes reached up to thwack...
Monarch Butterflies (Danaus Plexippus). Children (Rattus-Bagusses).
*This over-wintering spot is in Victoria Park, Rangiora. Here are some other known places where Monarch butterflies over-winter in New Zealand