Monday, 14 January 2013

Beauty and the Blissful Holiday

Hand made stepping stones
Okay, so I think we have already ascertained that I LOVE holidays!  Time to bliss out and work on 101 projects stewing away in my head.  Sometimes the projects work out really well and I feel such a thrill knowing that I have created something, be it out of wood, fabric or food.  Sometimes I experiment and see if I can achieve extending the life of something that little bit further (you know, reduce, reuse and recycle).  And sometimes what I do is a waste of time and a great little look-back-and-laugh opportunity.  Well here is one of those moments, captured visually forever......  the object was to extend the use of my dying jandals (or thongs or slops, depending on what neck of the woods you're from).  The heels and upper part were thinning and I thought I might just get another couple of months wear out of them if I padded them out a bit on the thinning bits.  So an old leaky water-bottle would do for the padding out bit. Yep, I'm a terrible hoarder - keep things in case I can put them to good use later on.   Actually, it would have worked a treat 'scepting that my heel of the jandal decided to actually tear right across!  Now I am sure some of you will think this is a really anal thing to do - mend a $10 pair of jandals!  But for me, it's the challenge of keeping things out of landfill for longer than is obvious.  Well, I guess that my project was only about 2 - 3weeks successful since the sole ripped right through the bottom of the sole!   Nice while it lasted - it was kinda like a reflexology feel to the jandals with the ribbed water-bottle patches!  Nice.  
But I have learned from the experiment that it would work quite perfectly next time, if the sole was not going to rip across the heel!
Thinning jandals... starting to rip at heel

Voila!  A bit of glue and we have a pair of funky reflexology jandals!
The garden:
The garden is always a source of beauty, wonderment and awe!  I have been doing some serious weeding and culling of undergrowth to create some definition between beds and pathways!  It has paid off, with lots of open spaces now and less hiding places for fungal infections and nasty bugs.  The chickens are enjoying scratching around in these newly worked areas, utilising the mobile scratching cages made out of chicken wire.  By closing them in at night (locked in their bedroom) and only letting them out when we get up, we have solved the noisy skrawking they were doing early morning, now it only happens when we forget to close them in at night!  Those mornings still elicit the response they are seeking to create - someone running to feed them to quieten them down!  
There are lots of flowering shrubs and plants - still lots of bees around!  Beauty abounds!

Echinacea flower

The beauty of an unfolding leek flower!

An enclosed humble leek flower head - stunningly designed Arabian architecture!

Visiting Monarch butterflies caught momentarily sipping away at the Flower Bar

Yams a-growing

Another thirsty patron at the Flower Bar

Handy having your own straw at your constant disposal

Garden delights... oranges, strawberries, nectarines, artichokes, leeks, figs and lemons
In the shed:
Putting some old jandals into artwork was another crazy shed project.  Made a junk crucifix (no offense meant) out of bits lying around - an old broken Aztec necklace, bits of copper foil, an old red beaded Thai sandal upper, purple rubber jandal strapping with diamante studding and an old Indian-inspired watchstrap.  Quite happy with the end result, using up bits that should have long ago ended up in the rubbish!  I love all religious artifacts and icons, hence the crucifix.  Not meant to be blasphemous by calling it a junk crucifix - it's just that that is what it is made from!

And on repurposing goods - Mike got a new phone for work (from work) and the protective case he used to hang it off his belt did not fit anymore - look at the great new job it is assigned to:  safe secateurs pouch!!  Many years ago, the secateurs lost it's safety catch and was always a bit dangerous to use as it never closed, I was often poking myself as I would put it into my pocket to keep it safely stashed till I needed to use it.  Now I just attach the old phone holder to my belt and it keeps my secateurs safely within reach!

Handy dandy secateurs pouch!

Junk Crucifix
Remember our cat got stuck in the lining between the wall and roof when our solar panels were installed?  There was a gaping hole left behind where my husband had desperately punched through the boarded up hole.  Concerned that Shanti might try to explore and get lost again, I enjoyed a little girl time in the shed (who said sheds are a guy thing??) figuring out how to make a little door out of our off-cut pieces of wood.  I know you are supposed to make a Z door for strength, but mine ended up as an back-to-front N door, as my pieces of off-cut pallet wood had to be used horizontally rather than vertically!  End result is a pleasing little door which can be opened if the solar guys need to get to the wires in the future, but can be safely latched to keep little kitties out.  Now why didn't they think of that in the first place instead of boarding her up inside there???

Doorway to the inside....

Safe little kitty door!

Of course no room is untouchable when I get let loose on holiday!  My husband had scored 2 shutters from a company that he collects sawdust from.  The shutters were made for an order but were the wrong size and the company was just going to dump them.  What a score!  Each one costs about $80 - $100!  One was used as an insert in our bedroom wall.  It acts as a ventilator between the solarium and our upstairs bedroom.  It can be closed in cold weather, or opened up to allow the accumulated hot air to rise from the solarium below, into the upstairs bedroom  in winter.
Bedroom ventilation shutter
What to do with the second shutter......... too good not to do something with it....... so after mulling it around for a while, I figured it would fit one of our bedroom windows, with a little space all around.  So I set out to install it.  Hinges cost $3 and latch cost $2 and with my son to hold it in place, it was screwed into position and a little latch attached so it can be opened to allow access to the window.  It works a treat!  These last few weeks it has been really warm at night and we can leave the window open and control the amount of air passing through!  Am very pleased with my $5 cedar shutter!

Window before... A makeshift curtain out of an old sari

New shutter in place, can be opened to allow light or draft through.

No comments:

Post a Comment