Posts Tagged ‘birthday’

No Moaning Today

I’ve just had a great birthday weekend, so I’m not moaning.

Started on Friday with a BBQ at the botequim (local bar), continued on Saturday with a family BBQ, Sunday was rest and recuperation relaxation.

So I start the post off with a splash of some happy colours.

One of the bushes I have outside my gate

One of the bushes I have outside my gate

Thursday night after work, I retrieved…

Here’s an excerpt from the post rather than rewrite the story.

“Yesterday was a busier day than I imagined. The previous night I had saved an old cabinet of sorts from the rubbish, and I had set about making it suitable to use in the kitchen.

It was also going to replace the grotty old thing I have used for the last five years.

Grotty old thing, but it sufficed

Grotty old thing, but it sufficed

And the result of my labours…

A new grotty old thing

A new grotty old thing

When I got it home it was just the top, sides, back and runners for drawers. I added a base plate and two shelves from old wardrobe (closet) sides that I got from the same dump. It’s not fancy, but it’s better than what I had. By the time I had finished, I was exhausted and my back was aching from the exertions of carrying stuff; the dump was about a half kilometre from home, some 500 yards. Doesn’t sound much but when you are on a walking stick, it’s a bloody long way.”

So that was how my birthday started. I am quite pleased with my labours. *pats self on back*

You can read about  and see photos of the family BBQ on the post Back to Normal.

I had another stroke of luck last week. Some time back I got a twig of a beefsteak plant and it took; it is now a healthy bush outside my gate. Before I put it there, I broke another twig off it and put it in a jar on the window kitchen window ledge. But all the leaves fell off and I feared it had died. However, I forgot to throw it out. Last week I noticed this in the window…

A shoot!

So all is well.

Until next Monday, bound to be something to moan about.


Change the World Wednesday – 7th Aug


virgoBirthday month! Yes, my birthday is this month, I am a Virgo. In Portuguese it’s quite funny, be cause “Eu sou virgem” is like saying “I’m a virgin” LOL and me, a 62 year old with 12 kids…. and seven grandkids. No! Eight now, I just found out last week that my estranged second daughter has had a little girl recently.

Toward the end of the month I will be celebrating with a BBQ at the bar, as I do every year, but this year will be a little different since I have embarked on my ‘beefless weeks’ each month, which are still happening. To compensate for the excesses and sins committed during my BBQ, I am making the rest August ‘beefless’.

Still no cat. I am catless, therefore sad. But I am sure that being catless is a temporary state.

There is some good news, but I will refrain from mentioning it here, as it complies with part of this weeks CTWW, coincidentally.

Click on the banner for the full post

This week’s CTWW, let’s move right along.

It’s a triple banger, and I get to do a little of each.

This week, unplug household appliances on standby. Pay special attention to any appliance with a clock or lighted panel (microwaves, coffee makers, etc.) … those are the obvious signs that energy is being used even when the appliance isn’t. Also look for phantom energy use … phone chargers, TVs, recording devices, etc. They all use energy when plugged in. Turn off the computer and monitor when not in use. Worried about maintaining your internet connection? Then, leave the modem on but turn everything else off. Consider a power bar to make this task easier.


OR …

Buy only local foods and products this week thereby reducing the amount of fuel used to get products from their origin to your shelf.


OR …

Go on a “no spending” diet this week. Refuse to purchase anything but the bare necessities thereby reducing the industrial processes required to manufacture stuff.

So, in reverse order… I often do things backwards, I hate being predictable, it’s a bit like being ‘normal’.

Well, the last bit is the easiest, because most of my buying is necessities, not quite the bare, but necessities. But I promise I won’t buy any wine, beer, chocolate or fancy cheeses this week or make any big purchases.

The second bit is harder, because I don’t have the means  (no car) to get really local produce. But I will walk hobble, remember I am on a walking stick, to the supermarket for my weekly shop (today) and the sacolão (fruit and vege shop) instead of using the bus.

The first bit, I already do all that. But last week, I bought a new stove, it’s energy rated No. 1 on a scale of five.

Mine has a smoked glass door

I have used two old stoves, both recycled from the street, for 5+ years. Neither have ever functioned well, but I persevered through necessity even though it has bugged me all the while.

My new stove (gas) does have electric start, and an oven light, but I am not plugging it in. I don’t find it necessary. To light it, I will continue to use my recycled cigarette lighters; once the gas runs out, the flint has another six months use.

I splashed out and got the ‘five-burner’ model, because the larger ring will reduce cooking times for big pots which I do sometimes.

Also the stainless steel will be easier to clean. I know this from experience in commercial kitchens.

Okay, that’s it for this week. I’m off back to bed at 3am…. *yawn* I only got up for a pee.


Change the World Wednesday – 29th Aug

I have never done this before, honest.

It wasn’t until I opened Eco to follow my link to Reduce Footprints that I realised I have not posted here for a whole week.

I have never done that before, I have never been so lazy, forgetful, inconsiderate, etc before (despite what my ex-wife says).

Now I am on my first coffee of the morning, but I still feel mortified that I had nothing to Fink about on Friday, no Saturday Satire, nothing to moan about on Monday. It’s not at all like me. And, to top it all off, I had my best day ever on the blog, 144 visitors; I’ve never broken 100 before and I did it in style.

Enough of the self-flagellation, today is my birthday, and I get to share it with you nice people. Sixty-one today; you can read my thoughts about it on Closer to Extinction, yesterday’s late night post on Life is a Labyrinth.

Last week’s CTWW post was an eye-opener. I was fully aware that we are often conned by the labels and ingredients on food, but to find the list of ingredients on a simple deodorant spray so extensive, did shock me; especially when I took up the Up the Ante and explored them.

Acerola berries – Crapemyrtle

A little side trip. Here I go off on my tangent. A couple of weeks ago, I was in my ‘new’ supermarket (I have changed for the bulk of my buying) and I spied a bottle of Orange & Acerola syrup, now I love Orange & Acerola combination. So a quick scan to make sure it didn’t have aspartame, and into the trolly. I might add that the label was surprisingly like another brand that I buy and trust; it wasn’t that brand on closer inspection at home. I made a jug. OMG, it was disgusting. It was only then that I put my glasses on and inspected the ingredients. Colour this, flavour that, preservatives, stabilisers… there wasn’t a single natural ingredient, it was just a chemical cocktail. Result, down the drain; lesson learned.

I used to have a large acerola bush in my yard producing fruit year-round, but I changed yards. I now have a small sprout growing from a seed that I found on the street.

On with this weeks CTWW:

This week share ideas on eating locally during the winter months. While “eating locally” may include meats, dairy, etc., for the purposes of this challenge we’re primarily talking about plant-based foods.


And then …

Come up with a plan, for your household, to eat locally throughout the year. This might include preserving produce which is currently available in your area, talking to farmers to see if they offer (or would be willing to offer) items during the winter, or growing a winter garden of your own.

This has always been a problem for me. Mainly because of the cost of getting to places where I can buy local produce. One of the very few times I miss having a car.

To top it off, my efforts to produce my own in my little backyard this year have not been as successful as the last season. However, I do have some little green tomatoes ripening, which is good because tomatoes are more than R$6 a kilo at the moment. So expensive, they have simply been off the menu. Now, USD1.50/lb may not sound expensive to you guys, but the normal price is USD0.25 – 0.40/lb. So I will have tomatoes in about two weeks. I still have dried cayenne peppers from my good year, and I have mint and ginger growing as well. Passionfruit will be good this coming year, a dead loss last year. My mamão trees (papaya) died.

So that’s it for this week. I am off to work, then I have a BBQ to prepare.



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