Well there WOULD have been a hole in our wallet if we hadn’t been such cynical Mainlanders who could smell a scam a mile away. Stevie-boy has a lot of guitars. Most of them he plays regularly, some, not so much because he wants to keep them in good nick. One guitar that he bought many years ago he hasn’t played hardly at all. The fact that it is a left handed guitar and Stevie-boy is right handed might have something to do with it but it, too, is one of those “keep for good” guitars. The other day Stevie-boy decided that what point was it to have “keep for good” guitars if you want to play them and are lusting after a 57 reproduction Strat and after seeing a friend sell their old clunker of a tractor within days of listing it on Gumtree, he decided to give it a go…I mean “what have you got to lose, it’s free to list”…
When Stevie-boy trundled up the driveway yesterday late afternoon he had something in his bag addressed to me…now what could this be?
OOOOH! Its my organiser from Ms Pauline, queen of teal and most talented lady of Dunedin who pens the delightful exploits of a crafty ma’am and her trusty sidekick Orlando and young Siddy-me-lad who has just joined the fray at The Contented Crafter. I won this organiser a little while ago and now it is just about to be revealed in all of its glory…
Seems you have a LOT to lose if you don’t have your finger on the pulse of the scammers market. The acceptance of the internet as a particularly good way to communicate, educate and engage in commerce has allowed the scammers to move indoors, stop hawking stolen goods out of the back of (stolen?) trucks and having to frequent bars to shiftily waft the allure of hidden treasure at strangers from the hairy confines of their armpits. They can now sit in a computer chair in their underpants eating a doughnut and quaffing a coke while they go about their nefarious ways and ply their trade in other people’s misery. Just a small aside…I wouldn’t want you to think that I was a criminal. I have been known to sit in a computer chair in my underpants eating doughnuts and quaffing the tea equivalent of coke but that’s where the similarities end…just clarifying that…
“TA-DAAAA” :) Isn’t it beautiful? When I won this beautiful organiser it was just a twinkle in Ms Pauline’s eye, a gem of an idea that was about to be born. This journal was created with me in mind. It is SO pretty…so very pretty that I have postulated on other blogs that I may just have to put it in a glass case and mount it in the lounge room only to be fondled by special guests. Ms Pauline will be rolling her eyes about now but whatchagonnadoeh? Serendipity Farm is very plain compared to this most beautiful creation. I am not sure that my thoughts are something that should grace these gorgeous pages ;)
Stevie-boy listed his guitar and sat back to wait and see what happened, after all, “nothing ventured, nothing gained” and “you can’t be any worse off (aka “minus one 57 reproduction Strat”) than you already are?” can you…can you? Seems its not only EBay that is prone to the old scamarooni trick whereby someone texts you (our texter was strangely unable to be texted back and we had to send them an email to contact them…first alarm bell sounding…) about what you are selling. It’s usually about something high end (like Stevie-boys Strat) and easy to fence. Next he said something along the lines of “What’s your firm price?” (said to make you think that this is a genuine buyer and garner a degree of conversational acceptance, getting you “on side”). Next came “I can’t get there to see it and will be sending it out of the country” (“DINGALING-ALING-ALING!!!”) and then added “let me know your bank account details so that I can put the money into your account and will get my courier to pick up the guitar” and BAM we knew instantly that this person was attempting to scam Steve.
This is what a wet dog looks like when it gets up and moves on…
Earl surveying his kingdom from the deck and that red thing is one of the blueberries YES they are tall aren’t they?
How did we know? It’s the oldest trick in the internet book. You contact someone about their guitar/high ticket item. You may or may not have access to someone elses credit card that you pinched and they are probably not even aware that you have their details because they have been sleeping on it and waiting for someone like Steve to list something that they want. Next they contact the seller and appear genuine. They then ask for bank account details or Paypal details and the next part is truly clever if it wasn’t so immoral and outrageously horrendous to bear the brunt of . They transfer stolen money from the bank account that they have been monitoring to the sellers account. They always put MORE than the amount that they paid and pretend that it was an oversight and ask the seller to refund the difference. Most sellers are just happy to have made a sale and have money in their account so they are happy to transfer that money back to the buyers account, after all, they paid didn’t they?
In the spirit of honesty, this is “Sanctuary” the name of my fully enclosed veggie garden…although fully enclosed would mean that “things” couldn’t get in and this isn’t quite the case here… lets just call this photo “Winter decline”
This was once a mountain of pumpkin fecundity and now the nasturtiums are making a play for supremacy. A good play by the look of it!
Happy in making a sale, the seller sends off the guitar to the buyer and happy days, everyone is happy…but not for long. Pretty soon the seller finds out that they are being investigated by the crime squad about money taken from someone’s account, they have to refund said money…all of it…even the “excess” money that the scammer creamed off the top before they hightailed it away over the hills and dales with both your item AND a few thousand spare dollars for spending cash leaving you without your item AND in the hole for more money than you would have gotten for it. A HUGE double whammy and so many people must fall for this because the scammers just keep…on…doing it. It seems legit, how the heck would you know if someone was scamming you? Well the best way, especially on Gumtree where you have NO protection at all, is to only accept cash for your item and to only deal in person, face to face with the buyer. That’s IT that’s all. That’s the best possible way to make sure your sale isn’t shonky.
I think that my yacon might be telling me that it is time to harvest the tubers…what do you think? ;)
This is Anakin. He is a British (racing) blue rex. Stevie-boy fed him corned beef and he kept Stevie-boy company while he was painting. This picture doesn’t do him justice as he is HUGE and gorgeous and boofy and wonderful and talked to Stevie-boy for ages on his tea breaks…almost like I was there and he couldn’t get a word in edgewise either ;) (just like me but I don’t eat corned beef ;) )
We sent back an email saying “we only deal face to face and with cash as there are SO many scammers out there”. Funnily enough we never heard back from the “buyer” after that ;). It really is both buyer AND seller beware these days folks and just because somethings “seems” legit, doesn’t mean that it is.
Earl gets freedom inside Sanctuary when there isn’t anything in the gardens and here you can see both Earl and Bezial eating their weights worth of oat leaves. Neither of them is ill, they just both love their “salad”
There is an amazing array of water tank accouterments that you can buy these days that assure you that each and every single one of them is MOST important to use with your water tank. Back when I was a kid you just had a galvanised water tank that may or may not have contained frogs (in our case …did) and that was usually leaking in several places and if you were foolish enough to climb up on the tank stand and peer myopically into the hole in the top you were rewarded by purest algal green…we drank that. Might be part of why I am the way that I am today ;)
I have been cooking up a storm lately but have conveniently forgotten to take any pictures. I found a wonderful chocolate cake recipe that I baked for a friend recently and then again for another friend as it appears it was “friends birthday month” for the last 2 weeks. This cake is quick, easy, vegan (but you wouldn’t know it) and scrumptious. Its the result of one celebrity chef, Mr Georgio Locatelli’s daughter being profoundly allergic to just about everything. What an irony! Having one of the most famous chef dads and not being able to eat almost anything that he cooked for you. The cake is yummy. It’s still moist and tasty after a week but good luck keeping it for a week. Have it with icing (frosting for you Americans), cream (whipped coconut cream for we vegans), a dusting of icing sugar (confectioners sugar for you Americans) I am tired! All of this translation is blowing out my word count and goodness only knows I don’t need ANY help to do that! I will give you the recipe. Even if you are a card carrying, dyed in the wool carnivore it never hurts to have a cake that doesn’t rely on eggs, milk and butter to make as you just never know when you might be out of them and need to make a cake. Here’s your answer, tuck it away someplace you can find it again (and again…and again…)
This one is in tsp and ml for people who don’t like to weigh
Just scroll down this article to find the recipe using weights (which I prefer) for all of you OCD bakers who love their kitchen scales
As you can see, “something” has been scoffing the silverbeet and anything else that takes it’s fancy in Sanctuary. Where on earth could it be getting in?
I think I might just have found the entry point…sigh…if this IS the entry point the little sods won’t be getting in tonight because I just sewed it shut! “You will have to try a bit harder tonight possums or go hungry!
Stevie-boy and I headed into the city yesterday and were a bit late coming back so Steve decided that he would like pizza for dinner. I haven’t had much luck with him and pizza bases as he is very fussy and doesn’t like them too crunchy or thin so I went hunting for a deep pan pizza base and found a doozie. This base worked amazingly well. It’s quite soft and sticky so I will warn you that once it has proved it will be a bugger to remove from the bowl and then stretch into place in your oiled tins but the results are awesome if you like a nice thick pizza base. The recipe said that it made 2 pizzas but I reckon you could make them a bit thinner and get 3 out of this recipe because even for Stevie-boy they were a tad too thick and resembled focaccia more than pizza bases. He ate half of the pizza and has a spare half in the fridge and a whole unbaked pizza in the freezer. Pizza heaven! If you would like to have the recipe, here it is…
This little garden was completely covered with a thick carpet of climbing geraniums (those sticks are ancient ruinous remnants of them) and nothing much grew here but all it takes is a bit of effort and suddenly nature can recover. It would appear that “nature” in this case is bulbs :)
Gardening doesn’t amount to a hill of beans if you don’t end up with something to harvest after all of your hard work and effort. This folks, is a tiny hill of beans. At least I have SOMETHING to remember the harvest by ;)
To top the pizzas I first made a lovely thick tomato sauce with a chopped onion fried in a little oil, when translucent add 2 cloves of chopped garlic, a teaspoon of Italian dried mixed herbs, a tsp of veggie stock powder and then a regular can of chopped tinned tomatoes. I then cooked this mass down till it resembled tomato paste and let it cool while the dough proved on the proofing rack over Brunhilda, a most excellent place to do this over the cold winter months. We had bought some bocconcini in brine on our fortnightly shopping trip and they were duly sliced and scattered over the top of this base with sauce slathered over it. Next came crumbled feta, fine sliced hot salami, a half a large cabanossi cut into rings, a few handfuls of bacon, half a red capsicum and an onion thinly sliced, some pickled jalapeno’s, some Parmesan and a good grating of cheddar later and a good hot bake in Brunhilda’s hot oven resulted in exactly what the doctor ordered for Stevie-boy with the promise of leftovers and another pizza event whenever he feels like it.
Most of the plants on this table were grown from cuttings or tubers collected on our walks. Most of them have survived admirably, indeed, the wormwood was just shoved into a pot and it grew. That’s exactly the sort of plant we want living here, it will grow happily with minimal care. You just have to think a bit prior to planting a garden…what will grow well in your area? What doesn’t need too much water? What will handle your temperature variations? What grows easily from cuttings and seed and quickly? After a few questions you have yourself a hardy beautiful garden…oh I forgot one question…”What do the possums and wallabies HATE to eat!”
There might not be any foliage on this little potted Japanese maple but the it still looks quite pretty thanks to all of the peripherals that grace the pot
Remember how we installed our rainwater tank a few weeks ago? Well we have a little problem Huston. The only place that we could install the tank was near our bedroom under a down-pipe that was responsible for the teeniest bit of roof drainage known to man. A caravan would have more roof drainage than this bit of roof and we have had some decent rain lately and there isn’t a lot of water in the bottom of narfs happy tank. My happy dance had tailed off into a sort of shuffling semi-sad dance right up until Stevie-boy the wonderful had a brilliant idea…he has worked out an ingenious way to get water from the large part of the roof through a series of pipes into my tank. It will require the installation of another first flush device but that’s a small price to pay for me being able to slip my feet into my happy shoes and tap-dance the old happy dance shoe shuffle all over again!
Its heading for mid-winter here in Tasmania and the critters are starting to look for tasty things to supplement their diet. Not content with ALL of that green grass out there they have started sampling my potted plants. This is an ornamental bamboo grass. It has effectively been pruned. I take that as a warning and will only plant it somewhere “safe”
I have been attempting to bulk up for winter with excellent results and have put on 10kg. Can anyone tell me why my thighs are the very first place that I put on weight, but the very last place that I lose it? I would be most interested in the science behind that! While I am pondering science I am also removing food items that seemed to have snuck into my repertoire without me noticing and that are most probably the reason for the increase. I added coconut cream to my diet, and lots and LOTS of dates. I was also eating potatoes again, and bread…the more I think about it the more I know why 10kg have snuggled up to me and are hugging me for all they are worth. I know how to lose the extra weight, I just don’t want to ;). Seriously folks, who wants to lose weight in the winter? I am living on delicious soups now and steamed veggies and my morning buckwheat porridge sans coconut cream and dates and with grated carrot for sweetness and bulk narf filling power. Narf SHALL fit back into her size 10’s ;)
What’s this in the chook coop…all the way over in the far right hand corner…
“CLUCKY CHOOKS!” Hardly fair that they have only just started laying and they are now clucky. We worked out that at the rate we are paying for food and by the amount of eggs we were getting that each egg was costing us $20. That’s a bit steep for a humble egg, even a free range egg methinks!
So this humble Wednesday in the middle of the year finds me caught up with my RSS Feed Reader (an anomaly that probably won’t last out the week I can assure you ;) ), up to date with studies and just about to embark on a BIG secret plan for my Christmas gift for my eldest daughter. I can’t tell you about it because then I would have to kill you all plus she reads my blog (to keep tabs on how many times I mention her and if I can be sued for slander ;) ) so this plan has to remain under wraps, and lock and key for now. I am just about to start researching for our next study unit that involves creating a flier for a design event in Melbourne and a coloured postcard both created in InDesign. I have some great ideas that I am going to create in Illustrator but we have to do a fair bit of the dry research stuff before we can get to the fun stuff. That’s where narf comes in as Stevie-boy is conveniently AWOL earning a bit of a crust at the moment leaving narf to do the research. He has all week off next week and we are going to do all sorts of things including create the dogs large new dog compound and knock our studies out of the ball park. I just need to wade through the research stuff first…”anyone have any washing that they want folded and put away?” ;) See you all next week and remember not to take any wooden nickels…
Some of my wool stash. When wool is cheap and your husband is asking you if you want more…you say “YES PLEASE” :)
This big granny square is just using up all of the spare wool I had laying around and giving me something to crochet while I contemplated what the heck I was going to crochet next. I’ts on our spare bedroom queen sized bed here so methinks it might be almost finished. I am just about to start on a most delicious Bavarian crochet pattern that Ms Teddy/Tottie shared on her blog called (coincedentally…) “Teddy And Tottie” if you want to have a go yourself she has painstakingly created a pdf of the pattern and you can get it by clicking here…