Our weekend ….and this is how my husband “shops” no-shop style

No secret we are secondhand shoppers only. Everything we own is recycled from free or secondhand. Myself and another blogger were just saying a couple of weeks ago how everything you need turns up somehow if you are prepared to wait. Rather than impulse buying at malls we just have a list of items we need…and we need to buy them as cheaply as possible because we have little spare money. My husband takes a trip to town every Saturday morning and spends the week searching under $1 auctions on our most popular auction site, he’ll bid on things we need and hope to get stuff for $1-$2 so he combines collecting his treasures with dropping in at odd garage sales. I don’t generally go with him – he leaves at 7.30 am while I am still sitting in a zombie state trying to wake up, it’s winter here and outdoor shopping doesn’t appeal at present, he spends hours looking at tools and other very exciting junk which is actually very boring for his other half and he probably enjoys having me tag along as much as I love having him underwear shopping with me….rolling eyes and lots of sighing!! These are his latest purchases.

Electric jug $2 – Two years ago we were bought a jug as a gift. It cost $89 on special and I know this because it broke down 2 weeks later and we had to return and exchange for another. Two weeks ago this expensive jug started leaking. Roger picked this one up this week at a garage sale.Image

Cast Iron Frying pans $15: Normally he wouldn’t spend this much but these have been wanted for a long time. The large one is the same as one he dropped and broke the handle off last year….which wouldn’t have mattered too much but it took a big chip out of the side. These are hard to find and usually much dearer than this.


280 bricks $1: He bid on these and no one else did. We wanted something to make a path through a muddy part of the garden. Image

Last week he had bought something else from these people and got talking to them on Saturday. They owned a free range chicken farm but were getting rid of everything to try something else, the recession had hurt them. They had 1000 chooks they were selling cheap so Roger bought 3 red shavers for $10. He was then GIVEN 2 automatic water feeders (something we were wanting) and a aluminium sliding window to add to his new collection of recycled windows for another glasshouse.



25 kg bag of animal food nuggets $1: People had bought them for their sheep but they didn’t like them, it only had a little taken out of and Roger got it for pig feed.

So all this cost him $29 and the women with the chickens asked him if he was needing any chicken wire (and yes we do!) and on Sunday he is going to help them take a whole lot down and he can take it away. Roger would never ask for anything (except from mates if they were throwing stuff out) but he stops and yaks to people and comes home with all sorts. (I have grave fears for the state of our property as all sorts appear in ever growing heaps waiting to be tidied and stored somewhere out of eyesight!!)

So, me… I did the housework and some baking, planted mustard and cress in containers…actually the old trays of an old discarded beehive I found out in the wops. This is how they look this morning after a neighbouring cat used it!



I went to my granddaughters birthday party an hour and a half’s drive away. This is what I drew for her in my quiet times over the weekend. I send her a picture every week.


Now, these are the 3 dogs we have at present, the grey one is my son’s whose holidaying with us at present. This is what happens whenever you sit down to eat.Image

This is Bob. Bob is 18 years old and this is his beanbag bed. He loves it, it’s like his “blankie”.


This is what can happen when you go and help your husband unload 280 bricks off the back of a truck and try and secure your chickens back into their run, AND you leave 2 big dogs inside with a beanbag (because they chase chickens).Image

So this is how I spent yesterday evening, mending a beanbag with Bob sitting waiting patiently, on the beanbag, on the sofa.



23 thoughts on “Our weekend ….and this is how my husband “shops” no-shop style

  1. LOL! Your house looks like ours…a real country home :). I wish it was you coming to visit me instead of my sister and old school friend next month, you would fit right in :). As it is, I am going to have to spend the rest of the month “tidying up” to make it somewhat “normal” for the regular folks ;). Wish me luck, I am going to need it, it is bloody cold out there! :). By the way, my friend Jenny has an old Jack Russell called Tilly. She looks just like your dear old man and is just as feisty :). Good to see someone else has given up trying to stop the ashes from going wherever they want to…it’s winter folks ash will find a way! ;). You just made me feel all kinds of good about myself and our house with your post. I am not a solitary hobo, I am normal! At least I have someone else who lives and acts like I do and I suspect there are a lot more of us in the woodwork (or ash piles) 🙂


    • Lol, we’re pretty laid back about the house….Roger moreso than me. What wasn’t present for these photos (thank God!!) was the pile of tools (chainsaws, saw bench etc!!!) that sat in our lounge for months before I nagged enough and he finally moved them….to the front porch!! I vacuum the ashes up every couple of days and dust once a week, I’ve given up on trying to keep it nice. I also hate it when visitors come though, I’m very aware it’s not quite as tidy as it could be lol. No, you definately are not a solitary hobo, our house very much looks lived in….what’s NORMAL? 🙂


      • Whatever “normal” is, you really did make me feel better about myself and the state of our home today :). We have 2 very big dogs that take turns tag-teaming their dog hair all over the place and bouncing off the furniture. We have Brunhilda on 24/7 and she isn’t averse to throwing out ash at any given moment. We live in the country and we have soil everywhere…in winter it’s also mud and clay. We have (who knows how many) chooks all over the place and chook poo is par for the course. We have possums visit all night poohing everywhere and I gave up on my city sensibilities about 3 months after we moved here because I would have gone stark raving mad trying to keep this place spotless…it just aint gonna happen! I guess this is a life lesson of sorts, just consider me hard to teach 😉 I wouldn’t photograph Steve’s shed because it is so full of rubbish people might mistake it for the local Sidmouth tip. Same goes for my spare room but that’s entirely down to me. I stash things in there so that Earl won’t eat them. Earl is prone to jumping on the kitchen table and underneath it all I love living this way :). The freedom to have a little bit of dirt and worry about it on a Saturday (cleaning day) is wonderful. With 4 acres I am wondering where to start with this “clean up” or if I should just tell them “this is us, take us or leave (us)!” ;).


      • Yep, that sums up our place, all the above. We have a large under house basement my sweetheart can barely get into now 🙂 He has to do his workshop stuff out on the footpath outside the basement door lol.
        My house isn’t messy or dirty, it’s just not pristine and that’s ok 🙂 I’d relax, your visitors are coming to see you….and they’ll be in a happy, cosy home they can relax in.


      • We have a large “space” under the house. Not a basement per-se, sort of a tall crawl space ;). At the moment it has an assortment of old beds etc. in it that dad had stashed there years ago (sort of a lazy mans tip) and more spiders than anyone could possibly ever hope to see in their lifetime. I wonder if we could do anything with that space? It has a dirt floor but maybe I could make a sort of root cellar thing? I had completely forgotten about it till just then. Might have to lock unruly visitors out there eh? 😉


      • Ah! A root celler has been on our list of “one – days”, we would love one. Great idea and yep, if your visitors complain about your house you could lock them down there until they learn to appreciate your style of fine dining and hospitality 🙂

        Your old beds aren’t those funny wire base ones are they? Roger loves them lol. He uses them for rambling plants to grow over eg blackberries and he’s wanting one to hang under the bottom porch for a drying frame for onions, pumpkins etc…..long way to go though lol


      • I will send Roger my blackberries. I think it’s only fair as I sent you kefir grains. He can have the entire acre of them (and good riddance!) and in return I will keep my wire bed bases and will use them in our garden after your brilliant suggestion 😉


      • Excellent (about the grains). By the way, did you know you can culture cream with kefir? Its delicious! You can then turn it into gorgeous cultured butter. You can also strain it and make labneh like you do with yoghurt and it makes a really tangy cheese as well. I have found that if you store it in the fridge it lasts forever! I forgot about some in the back of the fridge for about 4 months and when I found it, it was perfectly fine. It does get sourer but that’s par for the course. It’s fantastic stuff. I have made lasagne with strained kefir and its lovely. Roger is welcome to the blackberries. Tell him he can put them in his cabin baggage on the way home from his visit here ;).


      • Made it, stuck it in a huge bucket and drank it before we managed to bottle it…same thing happened with the peach wine…the home-brew beer…we are starting to think we might be alcoholics ;). Try the cream and let me know how it goes. I poured myself a glass of soymilk kefir and left it on the bench while I was pottering around getting everything ready to make spring rolls for Steve’s tea tonight and when I got around to drinking it, it was fizzing! The top of it had obviously warmed up and it was actively bubbling like a cauldron! I am going to experiment and see if I can’t make alternative sweeteners out of root vegetables (the sweeter ones) and am going to steam some chestnuts tomorrow to mess about with them. This food lark is very interesting, especially when you head off to the fringes and start hanging about with the fungi and the bacterium…they make strange bedfellows indeed! 😉


      • Lol, I imagine we would do exactly the same thing 🙂 🙂

        I will try the cream, it sounds very good. My milk had small bubbles on a couple of days ago, tis good!

        Roger is a meat and veges man, I think he fears some of my kitchen creations…..he keeps telling me just cook whatever we have, you know I’ll eat anything – however watching the poor soul push his food around the plate is very painful lol. When offered more grapefruit he told his boss “She’ll only make some shit I can’t eat out of it” lol


      • take the grapefruit (or pamplemousse in French) and turn it into candied peel and preserved grapefruit (along the lines of preserved lemon) to use in tagines. Steve was so fussy when he moved here from the U.K. He wouldn’t eat garlic, anything (and I mean ANYTHING) with bones or fish point blank. He ate only carrots, peas and potatoes and now eats pretty much whatever I serve him. I must admit, I aim my selections in his flavour range but to quote a cigarette brand aimed at getting women to light up last century “Youv’e come a LONG WAY baby!” 😉


      • Ah. I’ve seen that done with oranges but hadn’t thought of grapefruit. I have 4 jars of grapefruit skins in vinegar sitting on my windowsill!
        Roger will eat most things, if it’s food it’s food but somethings he’d just rather not have to lol.


  2. Your dollar auction is something I wish we had around here, I have been watching freecycle and Craigslist for pavers, brick, anything I could make pathways with here to avoid the mud, but no luck so far.


    • It’s really great, amazing what people don’t want for $1 really. There are also local online garage sales, and stuff to give away in our area on Facebook, it might be worth you looking there if you are a Facebook person?
      We don’t have Freecycle here unfortunately, I would love to put heaps on it….our town is too small I think.


  3. Love your dollar auction! what awesome finds!! I do know what you mean about needing a place to store things. I’d like a long barn or Quonset hut with a wall across the middle somewhere. The larger room would be my creative space, with stations for everything I love to do (so the cute little cottage would be nicer to live in) LOL The smaller room would be for storing all my finds that I know will be useful ‘someday’.

    I love dogs, too, and at the same time, I do remember some of the things they get up to . . . but it’s so worth it!

    As to the garden boxes, if you either staple some chicken wire across the top before the plants get too big; or else strew small pinecones among the plants once they are up, cats will go in search of more comfy outdoor loos. My Aunty on the Coast used pinecones on all her outdoor flower beds when they lived in a large trailer court, with no fencing and lots of neighbours’ cats. Worked like a charm, she said. She did use the very small ones.

    Love your new chooks, too; I never heard of red shavers before; It’s so interesting reading all the blogs from downunder; I just love to learn . . .

    ~ Linne


    • Hi Linne 🙂 I would love to live in a big old barn, or a warehouse with big open spaces. We only use two rooms in our house so the whole place is becoming storage lol.

      Red Shavers are a very popular breed here, the most consistent layers we’ve had and nice natures. Our oldest is 8 or 9, she came from a chook farm 7 years ago. As for the dogs, if they weren’t so lovable…?!
      A good idea re the chicken wire, will do, thanks 🙂
      The pictures I haven’t been copying (should do!) but am thinking I will write her a book for Christmas.


  4. Forgot to tell you that I love your drawings; I hope you keep copies. Those would make a lovely book to give her one day when she is older (or maybe when she has a wee one of her own). ~ Linne


  5. It seems there are great deals to be had in your neck of the woods. We have car boots sales here but not as cheap as your $1 sales. I think I’d end up with lots of stuff if I lived near one of those. Too tempting!


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