Our Frugal Lifestyle

My photo
Passionate about eco-frugality. I used to party hard, clubbing my way from pay-packet to pay-packet. Never getting ahead, just getting by. Then came our much wanted baby with no savings in the bank - only an old car. Changes were made to our lifestyle and we didn't turn back. In the past 6yrs we purchased a flat, found employment, lived below our means, built an emergency fund, purchased a reliable car and saw the financial benefits of our frugal lifestyle. Our only debt is our mortgage. Our aim is to manage our cash flow wisely, pay off our home quickly and eventually work for pleasure, not necessity. Join us on our journey, share insights, tips and tricks to help us and others to get ahead while having a good time.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

10 Days Off - Day 1 Friday 22/4

Hello, I've been silent as my Gadget Geek - Card Reader stopped working and I can't bear my blog posts when they don't have images. I went out and purchased a similar product and now I'm back tracking the last few days.

Here in Australia we had public holidays for Easter Friday 22/4 and Easter Monday 25/4. Plus a public holiday on Tuesday 26/4 for ANZAC Day. I took 3 days Recreational Leave; Wednesday 26/4, Thursday 27/4 and Friday 28/4 followed by my days off Saturday, Sunday and the May Day public holiday on Monday 2/5. Thus my 3 days Recreational Leave in between the public holidays is giving me 10 continuous days off work!

On Friday 22/4 I spent 3 hours in the Botanical Gardens Plot. I planted some rocket, chives and spring onion seeds, a cucumber plant, a piece of purple leafed spinach root (don't know it's real name yet). I also hosed 3 plots and spent a lot of time looking at other gardeners plots with admiration. I have a few plants to pull out that you see in the front, but still have a fragile and infected leg so taking it very easy.

Our Plot a Work in Progress - Slowly Planting and Learning.
I met a couple of the gardeners also working their plots. And was able to gather some of their knowledge on what grows well when. One of the gardeners was going to clean up the communal garden this weekend so I jumped at the chance to grab a few greens before they were pruned back. This included pumpkin vine tips & flowers and Sri Lankan Spinach.
Picking Pumpkin Vine Tips and Flowers.
I cut lemon grass from my own plot as my family is loving cold lemon grass tea.

Cutting a few Lemon Grass Clumps for Refreshing Tea and Cooking.
I noticed the chili bushes were full of bright red chilies for my cooking. However I would like to make Chili Cordial. If anyone has ever made any I would love to hear your recipe and experience making and drinking it. We purchase it sometimes but it's a luxury item that we could maybe make ourselves.

Red Hot Chillies.
I'm really enjoying the gardens and that tourists and locals walk through. I can also answer a few questions with my limited knowledge. A grey nomad couple were making their lunch and I was able to give them a couple of Basil and Coriander leaves to give their sandwiches a bit more Pizazz.

After 3 hot sweaty hours I went home with this lovely stash.

Beautiful Natural Colours.
The spinach vines in the back left corner I now know as Sri Lankan Spinach after reading tropical gardening books. I really enjoy this spinach and would like to grow some on my plot.

The purple leaf spinach I enjoy in stir fry. It's not from my plot but it's going wild on a plot nearby and is about to be pruned back so I took advantage of taking some before it's gone.

The lemon grass is beautiful as a hot or cold drink and cooked in stir fry.

The Thai Coriander was growing on the footpaths. I dug a couple out to try and plant at home and on my plot. The Basil in the communal garden needs pruning back so I helped myself. It's one of my favourite herbs in so many dishes.

The green paw paw was on the ground knocked down my the jostling bats, I grabbed it for cooking or salads. I also took a piece of ginger that was on the ground maybe from a human pulling it out but not taking it home.

I also cut a couple of Rosella Flowers for their seeds and hope to try and grow a few on my plot.

Also as you can see in the picture I have the pumpkin vine tips and flowers. A couple of eggplants from my plot and chili leaves as I have recently learnt that the Filipino's, Korean and Japanese eat them similar to spinach.

Here is a quick dinner dish I made. I only remembered to take a photo halfway through eating hence the bowl looking a bit empty. It's Rice Noodles with Green Paw paw, Sri Lankan Spinach, Purple Leaf Spinach, Ginger, Chili and a Peanut Sauce Dressing.

Bon Appetite
Have you been playing in your garden too?


  1. Oh how I envy you. We are shill too cold to even plant. We ahve a freeze warning out for the rest of the week. What wonderful treasures you found. How lucky you are. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Oh yes, though "playing" is not the word I would use. More like "work." Been shoveling dirt into my new raised beds. Have to do it early in the morning before the heat sets in. I was determined to get seeds planted in three new beds today, but the fatigue took over, so it will have to wait until tomorrow. LOVE the variety of plants available to you in your communal plot. Wish I could find some Japanese flowering ginger. I really miss eating the flowers, called "Myoga" in Japanese. Love it sliced thin on top of cold tofu with some grated ginger and soy sauce. A classic summer dish in Japan.


Thanks for commenting - I love getting feedback, sharing experiences and learning from you.