Keep the Clutter Out

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I have previously written about the importance of stopping clutter coming into your home.  Decluttering is only one weapon in a multi-faceted approach to keeping your home clutter-free.

One one the biggest culprits is mail.  We have eliminated most of our mail by having a ‘No Junk Mail’ sticker on our mailbox and opting to receive as much information as possible electronically.However, today we actually received 4 pieces of mail  Here they are.

Mail

There are 2 local publications – The Range News (newspaper) and The Hinterland Times which is more of a magazine format.  I always read them to keep up with local issues and then they will be recycled.  The item on the top of the pile is the first piece of election advertising material that we have received.  It was read and then went straight into the recycling.  Finally, the large yellow envelope was the most interesting piece of all.  It was a bundle of brochures and information from the company where we purchased our solar panels.  We contacted them to see if they could provide some literature for the Sustainable House Open Day which is coming up at the beginning of next month.

To be recycled

This is what went into the recycle bin immediately – envelopes, election information and the catalogues which are inserted in the local paper.

Reading materialThese are the 2 local publications which I have set aside to read.

Solar informationThe solar information which I will file until it is required next month.

By dealing with the mail immediately there are no piles to be sorted out later on and no clutter that is not required.

Slow Living – May

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Another month has flown by and it is time to review it in the spirit of the monthly round-up at Slow Living Essentials . {nourish*prepare*reduce*green*grow*create*discover*enhance*enjoy}

Here are the Slow Living categories:

{Nourish}  Apart from the everyday cooking I discovered that I could make very acceptable gluten-free cupcakes by simply substituting gluten-free flour for regular wheat flour.

Cupcakes

{Prepare}  I retrieved several kilos of cherry tomatoes from the freezer and made some more tomato sauce.  I gave some to Missy and restocked the supply in our pantry.

2013-06-03 02{Reduce}  When I look around our home I can see how much ‘stuff’ we do not have.  It feels so much lighter not to have excess in our lives.

Bookcase

{Green}  Another raised bed made which brings the total to 3 so far.  These have all been created entirely with salvaged or leftover materials.

2013-06-03 05{Grow}  This is the time of the year when we harvest with seemingly almost no effort on our part.  The citrus are all producing luscious fruit – oranges, grapefruit and lemons as well as so many avocadoes that we can almost eat them at every meal.  We have planted more seeds and the bok choy seedlings are poking theirs through the soil.  We planted seed potatoes in another bed.

2013-06-03 06The harvest…………….

2013-06-03 07{Create}  I made a dressing gown for Miss O.

2013-05-14 03{Discover}  I am discovering some more family history snippets as I keep working on my family tree.

{Enhance}  We have applied to have our home included in the Sustainable House Day in September.  It was interesting to write the application and really think about all of the things that make our home sustainable.  Many of them are things we now simply take for granted.

2012-08-05 02I also made enquiries about joining the local Friends of the Library group.

{Enjoy}  We enjoyed having visitors.  Our daughter who lives in Melbourne was here for a weekend – she managed to tack it onto the end of a work trip so that was good.  We enjoyed her company and dined at a local restaurant one night.  Miss O came to stay for a few days before she went back to school after having had her tonsils removed.  She and I had lots of fun and you can read about it here and here.  Taking time to savour afternoon tea with friends is special.

Afternoon tea

Now I am off to check out some of the slow living blogs.

Til next month………..

Sharing Sustainability

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2001 marked the inaugural Sustainable House Day.  This is held in September each year and owners of homes or businesses with sustainability features can choose to open their premises to showcase these features.

This event is free and you can go to various locations in your area to gain information and share ideas.

We first became aware of this event through the Alternative Technology Association and have seen several properties in previous years.

This year we have registered to participate by opening our home as part of Sustainable House Day.

2012-08-05 02It is still a few months away so there is plenty of time to register if you feel you have a suitable property or get involved by attending an open house in your area.

Here is the website.  There will be more information closer to the time.  It is a great opportunity to find more about sustainable living in your area.

Mousetrap

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No, I have not been catching rodents.  It is my excuse for no post last night.  My mother, The Duke and I went to see a production of Agatha Christie’s, “The Moustrap” by the Centenary Theatre Group in Brisbane.

After running for nearly 60 years in London’s West End there is a small window of opportunity for amateur groups to perform this iconic play.  We thoroughly enjoyed the performance and it has whetted my appetite to see the London production when we finally make a trip to the UK (hopefully in the next few years).

Today it is cold – a renewed blast of winter – but fine and windy so looks like a great day to get the washing dry and clean the house.

Speaking of houses, the Sustainable House Day is running again this year.  Homes with are variety of sustainability features are open to the public tomorrow, Sunday 11th September from 10am – 4pm.  Check the link for locations and information.  Major cities and many regional areas are participating.  We went to some Sunshine Coast ones last year and gleaned lots of ideas for our own home and garden.  One day ours may be featured, who knows?