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Sunday, January 3, 2016


When we bought this house there was a large patio out the back.
In Queensland we like to sit outside when we entertain on these patios and they are often shaded by pergolas.
We were lucky as ours was under the roof of the house so there was not  problem with that.

The problem was that our house is on the top of a hill with a large exposure to the western, afternoon sun....
and the western, afternoon sun is fiercely hot in Queensland !

So to cool the house down and prevent the afternoon sun from boiling those inside the house
and to be able to use this outdoor area we enclosed it with shutters.
(Of course on hot days we just stay inside in the air conditioning. )

We furnished it and lived with it for ten years and were relatively happy with it but recently we felt ready for a change.

So off we went looking and before long the old stuff was packed up and sold on
and new furniture arrived.

This is the new look.
We're going French Provincial - a style I love and which suits our climate.
( I already have it in my bedroom. )

I love the white , it makes it all light and airy.

It's still a work in progress.

The coffee table has to go.
We think we (Tony !) will have a go at painting it white.

and we will just work on bits and pieces to enhance the look.

We're pretty happy with it so far.



Since the kids all went home a week ago I have to admit I've been taking it easy. 
Oh, I've changed all the sheets on the beds, washed all the towels and tidied up a bit but just a bit every day. 
Tony's done his bit with the vacuum and the mop but the rest of the time we've been relaxing, watching a few movies, spending a bit of time looking at our holiday photos blown up on our big screen TV.
Meals have centred around the BBQ and the large leg of ham we are endeavouring to consume before it becomes rancid ( it lasts about two weeks - That doesn't sound very nice but in fact is is a lovely ham  )   

Tonight Tony is the Cook.
That's his specialty apparatus out there under the light.                                                                          

It's his Weber Q. 
We use it a lot and he was keen to try cooking something new on it.

He decided we could use up some ham and give ourselves some variety by cooking a frittata 

And the temperature gauge on the lid is a great help so you don't singe everything.

So here is the result.

Not bad eh?

And no pots and pans to wash up but this one dish !

P,entry left for lunch tomorrow to.



Here in sunny Queensland these days we have air conditioning to combat the heat. 

As well as high temperatures we have high humidity and that's a killer !
How we survived in days gone by without air- con I don't know. 
In my teaching days the heat inside the classroom (35 degrees plus ) with thirty hot sweating bodies after play break was unbelievable ( so was the smell ! ) and not an air conditioner in sight !

But keeping cool with air conditioning comes at a price...... A very high price !
The cost of electricity is climbing rapidly so we have finally taken the plunge and installed solar panels.
Twenty- one of them !

In a country with so much sunshine it is sensible to harness the sun

and even when the aircon is going all day we use the electricity we produce ourselves to power it. 

It's a simple idea really and very successful for us.
I just make sure I wash, bake, turn the dishwasher on, as much as possible during the daytime.

Our neighbours also have them.

Looking round the neighbourhood most houses have them.

Different numbers of panels......and different placements depending on roof shape

And the direction that the house faces.

We are looking forward to the day when we can store the electricity we make in the day so we can power our lights at night.
It would be wonderful to be self- sufficient

And great to be rid of those power plants churning out their horrible emissions into the atmosphere.