Monthly Archives: September 2011

Three Months and Counting

Happy Monday morning!

My coffee’s brewing, one kid is sick and the other cranky, the laundry is piling up and the rain keeps falling. In other words, I’ll keep it quick today.

Yesterday was three months til Christmas Day and I officially start getting my Christmas geek on this week. I’m excited. I’ll be linking and posting some Slow Home Christmas ideas over the coming weeks, as well as the usual green home, getting organised, decluttering posts. I hope you’ll enjoy them.

In the meantime, some photos of slow you may appreciate as you get ready for another week:

Gifts for The Babies

{via the green gal on flickr}


The newest Gift Guide has arrived and this one is all about the babes.

From the newest of newly arrived parcels, through to 12 months old, these ideas and suggestions should give you plenty of gift-giving options that are both out-of-the-box and kinder to our environment. Again, they’re one of the following:

  • an experience
  • handmade
  • homemade
  • vintage
  • repurposed/recycled

If you have any suggestions, I’d love to add them to the guide!

In other news, we’re in teething hell over here, so forgive me if I’m MIA on the odd occasion. Plus non-Daylight-Savings is kicking my butt at the moment. The kids apparently feel that 5:00am is the perfect time to start the day. Yay!

Play Time! Magic Playdough.

Magic Playdough

Magic Playdough – sure, I made it up, but it. is. awesome.

Isla and I did this together yesterday afternoon and the look on her innocent little face was priceless. For a quick, fun, imagination-firing activity, I don’t know if this can be beat.


You’ll need:

a batch of playdough (recipe here) MINUS the food colouring

a variety of food colouring in liquid form


1. Make the playdough up as normal, but hold off on adding the food colouring.

2. Once the dough is made, divide it up into 5-10 balls.

3. Using your finger, poke a hole in the centre of each of the balls, to create a well.

4. Put a few drops of food colouring into each of the balls.

5. Pinch the top of the balls closed, sealing the food colouring in.

6. Give the balls to your little ones, telling them that it’s magic playdough. You can tell them a “magic spell” to use which should bring the colour out of the dough, or you could tell them that if they make a wish and wish hard enough, magic colour will come out of their ball. Something along those lines anyway.

To further stretch the fun factor, you could also add things like glitter, or sparkly confetti stars and hearts to the centre too. So it becomes “magic treasure playdough” and a whole other sensory experience.

Isla was convinced that she was magic, “Magic, magic playdough, shooooooowww me your colours!!!” and spent the best part of an hour playing with it. That’s a success in my book!


**Just a note – this is a little bit messy. We ended up with food colouring all over our hands and the craft table. It’s not a big problem, but probably worth mentioning.**



Slow Your Home Gift Guides Are Here!

{via Laurie | Liquid Paper on flickr}

Three months and five days til Christmas. Crazy, I know!

Last year I was due to give birth to Toby early-mid December so forced myself to be Christmas-ready by December 1. I had everything bought and wrapped, and damn if it didn’t feel good. This year there’s no baby due (phew!) but it’s still going to be my aim to have all our gifts bought and wrapped by December 1. That way I can spend December drinking cocktails and doing endless Christmas crafts with the kidlets. (At least one of those things may actually happen.)

On top of that, I still aim to stick with my gift-giving challenge of presents that are either handmade, homemade, vintage or recycled/repurposed, with the added category of experience gifts. (They leave a memory but no lingering “stuff”. Perfect!)

So I’m making a list of gift ideas for all the important people in your life for not only Christmas 2011 but birthdays, christenings, weddings and housewarmings. Some are handmade (by others), some homemade (by you), some are DIY repurposing projects and others are vintage. Rather than a “you should buy this exact thing for this exact person” kind of guide, think of it as inspiration for you to go out and buy/find/create thoughtful, meaningful, slow-home-worthy gifts for those you love. And those whose parties you have to attend regardless.

I’ll add a new gift guide most days, and have already put up Gift Ideas for Dads and Gift Ideas for Mum. Let me know if you have any suggestions and I’ll add them too.

Off to start making my list (and check it twice!)

How to Clean Your Shower Without Using Chemicals

This post was written earlier this year for my previous blog, The Lavender Experiment, but for some reason didn’t make the switch with me when I moved to Slow Your Home.

Week in, week out, this annoying, thankless task needs to be done. When I was pregnant with Isla I became super-sensitive to commercial bathroom cleaners and their horrible, toxic smell so I had to find a natural alternative. It’s taken me a couple of years to perfect it, but I wouldn’t consider any other option these days.

You’ll need:

white vinegar in a spray bottle
damp cloth
microfibre cloth or old, soft rag

1. Spray your shower walls and floor (or all tiled surfaces) with undiluted white vinegar.

2. Sprinkle a couple of spoonfuls of borax over your damp cloth and use this to scrub your tiles and grout, concentrating on any dirty/soap-scummy/mildewy spots. Leave the vinegar and borax while you clean the rest of the shower.

3. Give the shower a quick spray to rinse off the vinegar and borax, being sure to concentrate on the floor to rinse out any excess. Also give the glass surfaces a quick spray with water.

4. Spray the glass surfaces with your undiluted vinegar and wipe over with a clean damp cloth, concentrating on any shampoo or soap scum around the bottom.

5. Wipe over the whole shower with your microfibre cloth to dry and remove drips and streaks.

Fun? No. Green? Most def.