window on the sea

view of sea from cave outside Broome

I live a 10 minute walk from a river and 20 minute drive from the sea, but the year before last, we spent Christmas at Eco Beach. Eco Beach is a 2.5 hour flight from home followed by a 1.5 hour drive from Broome.

Australia is known for its wide-open spaces, but to have a bit of beach to yourself, you usually have to travel from the city.

Eco Beach is situated only a sand dune away from the beach. Long walks, fishing, kayaking, swimming, and simply sitting contemplating while looking out were how we spent our four days there.



Day 5 of 365 less things may be a bit of cheat really, as I have more than I discarded or re-purposed.

I won a door prize at the local sustainability fair, which enabled me to spend up to $75 at the EcoShop at Environment House. I spent a little over, by exchanging my voucher for a small bar of handmade soap, environmental toothbrushes, Mokosh Face Cleansing Powder, and a six-pack of ecosilk bags.

decluttered_recycling_bagsThe ecosilk bags were to replace the store bought bags which I binned or re–purposed. The store bought bags are made of some sort of synthetic material which either becomes soft or brittle when washed a few times. Because of this, the stitching tears around the bottom of the bag, handles, and the little loop that goes over the peg at the store to retain the bag.

I kept two old recycled bags to use in the garden, although one may have to be binned as the holes in the bottom have torn even further with just a few rose prunings.

The ecosilk bags are heaps better than the shop bought recycled bags. Apart from being bright and attractive, they appear to hook over the stand for the shop assistants more easily.

containers and lids

On day 4 of 365 less things I was determined to clear out the empty food storage container cupboard of any broken and or unpaired lids and containers.decluttered_containers

There was not as much plastic container clutter to discard as I thought. A few take-away containers without lids or containers, some lids that I thought to keep in case any of the others broke, and some ‘saved’ empty water bottle containers. However, these have now been put in the rubbish bin or recycling bin. It is still a mystery to me why lids which are obviously the same plastic material as the container do not have the recycling symbol on them, so I cannot put them in the recycling bin.

I still haven’t found the lid to the burger press and freezer keeper set. But this is still useful by using one of the burger containers as a lid. It may still turn up, as I haven’t turned out all the cupboards, to match up the containers and lids.

Having emptied the cupboard, I sorted containers that have a specific purpose and the pyrex containers into the original cupboard, and put the plastic containers onto a shelf in another cupboard. This shelf had been bare for a while, I think because I collected up all the attachments to the food processor we were no longer using and put them in a less accessible cupboard. Although I don’t use all the attachments for kitchen gadgets, I tend to keep them with the appliance. But I’m always questioning whether to discard the ones I don’t use, or simply store them elsewhere like I have done.

How I have arranged the two empty food storage container cupboards may not work, as I have some containers  in-use in the fridge, freezer, and pantry. But will adapt as we go, knowing that the containers are complete with lids.

going for five

Today was the fourth day in a row that I have rode my bike to and from work. Eight kilometres there and eight kilometres back.

Tomorrow, I’ll be riding to work, then to a film, and then home.

Admittedly, the Somerville is only ten minutes ride from my current Friday job. But if I ride home from the film, then I will have rode my bike for a whole week. Go me!

virtual decluttering

This week I decluttered my desk of the computer that was running Windows. It had had a good innings, as it has been useful for over ten years. I had started to use it less and less as we now run the couple applications that need the Windows operating system in VirtualBox on H’s Linux computer. Also, the battery was a little tired so it took a few presses of the on switch to get it up and running.

There was no sadness moving on this beige box, unlike decommissioning my SPARCstation 2. I shed tears over that. So much so, that I have not been able to finish this blog post until now.

H went to a lot of trouble to choose a new box  that had a super quiet power supply and fan. And I must admit, there was no comparison between my new Linux computer and the SPARCstation. The SPARCstation sounded like a plane taking off in comparison. But I do miss my WYSIWYG FrameMaker application. So far, the combination of the SPARCstation, SPARCprinter and FrameMaker is the only setup that has been truly WYSIWYG.

The SPARCstation and peripherals joined the other stuff in the bin on Resource Recovery Day April 2008.

Ending on a positive note, decommissioning the Windows computer means that I have successfully decluttered another item for the The De-clutter ’52 Things in 52 weeks’ Challenge organised by The Organised Housewife.

in the ground

The mango pip that I sprouted almost three years ago to the day, is now planted in the ground. It is under an established pomegranate tree, which I hope will protect the tree until it is more established. I will then cut back the pomegranate tree.

Just prior to the tree going in the ground, it did flower but it was not followed up by fruit as we had about three very hot days and the flowers were scorched. Also, many of the bottom leaves have dropped off either due to the stress of planting or the hot summer weather.

I’m happy that it has found its feet (or roots), as there is new growth from the top and it is groiwng upright. Also, it is happily sharing the irrigation with some catmint and a feral pumpkin, zucchini, or cucumber. Not sure how to tell these apart until you see the fruit.

back in the saddle

I haven’t rode my bike for a couple of weeks for various reasons; holidays and hot days being the main ones.

H has adjusted my saddle tonight and I have had a test ride. Hopefully, we have got it right now. I have been experiencing a sore neck and shoulders after riding my bike, enough to worry about it and nearly get to a physiotherapist. Except, that if I don’t ride my bike and do a few stretching exercises it comes right after about a week.

Tomorrow I will be riding to work, then meeting up with H and a friend at the Somerville for this week’s Festival FilmIn a Better World, then riding home.

It is going to be cooler tomorrow, only 25 deg C, so the ride in the morning and evening will be pleasant temperature wise. We should zoom home as the winds are forcast to be a moderate South/South West.