Monday, February 28, 2011


"Himself" says we need to prioritise fixing our gutters and other not so exciting maintenance jobs before winter sets in and I know he's right.  But I do so want to spend our hard earned cash on a few more frivolous items, particularly for our garden.  The bean bags (see earlier post) and croquet set are still on my wish list.  And now I've discovered another great garden accessory via Dwellers Without Decorators.  Are these not the coolest patio heaters?  With chillier evenings around the corner, these would be a nice addition to an outdoor room or deck.  Yes, I know, not as important as ensuring our house is leak free, but some time they might make it up the priority list.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Domestic Bliss

Our veggie patch (or as the kiwis would spell it, vege patch) has injected a little added bliss to our home life.

We had our first harvest this weekend!  Our pak choy was ready to debut in one of our favourite meals to make at home, Thai Stir Fried Beef with Red Peppers and Pak Choy.  Here it is in the making:

The recipe by the way comes from Stylish Irish Rachel Allen 's book "Rachel's Favourite Food At Home" and I can heartily recommend it.  If I can make this, anyone can!

Friday, February 25, 2011

The Mini-Gift List

I admit it – I am a difficult person to buy a gift for.  The problem is that I know far too well what I like and what I want.  There’s an ongoing scouting and editing process going on in my head that no one else could possibly keep up with or fully decipher.  As a consquence ‘himself’ rather understandably gets very stressed leading up to Christmas and my birthday.  So this Christmas just passed, I decided to help him out (yes, I know I’m fantastic).  As we’d agreed to only get eachother mini presents, I put together a list of gifts each costing less than $100 that he could choose from and I even gave him some direction on where to go to buy them!  Here's my list:

1.     An orchid (they even have them in Foodtown i.e. our local supermarket!)
2.     A posh scented candle from Mecca Cosmetica


3.     Gift Voucher for the place I get my nails done


4.     Silver wallet from Country Road

5.     White Hands bookends (on lower floor in Borders on Queen Street)

6.     Years Subscription to Your Home and Garden

7.     Book called 21st Century Houses Down Under (It’s in Borders)
8.     Shower gel to go with my perfume (Vera Wang)

9.     Vintage champagne saucers from TradeMe or Ebay (the ones Marilyn drank from)


 10.  And if ever unsure - a small bottle of a nice brand of champagne

I ended up receiving two lovely gifts from my list and a third non list item.  Turns out that the list actually inspired him and gave him the confidence to choose something all by himself!

Now if he’s a really good boy, he’ll surprise me with another item when I least suspect it!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

In praise of: Getting things done

Came across this on Tabletonic and I just love it!  Might just have to print it off and stick it up on my office wall as well.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

In praise of: White Vinegar

I can't fully explain the satisfaction I get from finding new uses for things like white vinegar or baking soda.  Does it come from some warped desire to be thrifty?  (Warped in that I'll put the couple of bucks saving towards the cost of,oh let's say a woolly accessory with a four figure price tag - yes, I'm still lusting after the Hermes blanket!) Maybe it's because I like the idea of being Green and sustainable and embracing the whole Eco-Chic movement?  Or perhaps I'm attracted to a more simple way of life, a time when there weren't whole supermarket aisles offering an overwhelming array of detergents and cleaning sprays and fresheners...  The latest and most fantastic use I've discovered for white vinegar is as rinse aid for the dishwasher.  The glasses come out so sparkly, it makes my heart sing a little!

Friday, February 04, 2011

Accessorising our Garden

My quest for outdoor beanbags has begun.  So far, my favourites come from lujo.  They're made from marine grade fabric so it won't be a disaster if we leave them outside - a definite plus living in Auckland (well, they're made in NZ so I guess the company understands the weather conditions!).

At first I thought I'd go for an understated grey to match the colour we've painted the outside of the villa.

However, I'm more and more tempted by the "Jockey Red".  Could be a fun shot of colour in our otherwise very green back garden.  Decisions decisions...

All pictures via Lujo 

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Our new garden

Very excited today to see our rear garden taking shape.

Not very long ago it looked like this:

By lunchtime today, the fantastic Jonathan from Beechscapes had it looking like this:

And by the time I got home from work, hey presto, we had a lawn!!

I'm most excited about our future veggie patch.  I have a dream to never buy a vegetable in the supermarket again...

I do have a few new items for my shopping list though:
  • Lawnmower (now that we have a mow-able lawn!!)
  • Outdoor bean bags
  • Croquet Set
It's wonderful to make some progress!

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Wrap me in Hermes?

Via New-ist 
I watched Despicable Me yesterday and one of my favourite lines was when the littlest of the little girls saw the unicorn furry toy at the funfair and exclaimed "It's so furry I want to DIE!"  Lately I've found myself, well maybe not quite yearning for, but wanting a Hermes blanket (even though it's summer here in NZ).  It's just that every styled interior in every glossy interiors book or magazine I pick up seems to feature one.  While a Hermes blanky and I have yet to come into actual contact with one another, I'm anticipating I'd have a very similar reaction to that little girl!  They're horrendously expensive, so much so I'm not sure I would ever really be able to justify the purchase... at least not to 'himself'.  And I'd likely be a nervous wreck actually snuggling up in it!  Maybe me and my red wine and chocolate stains are best off for now merely drooling over the pretty pictures.
Via New-ist 

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