Thursday, August 17, 2023

A Bird-House Creating Workshop

Greetings lovely friends & readers

Every few days I pick some fresh stems of Daphne - I like to keep a small vaseful on my kitchen bench & each time I'm working there I lean in & have a big sniff 😉💗 ... as far as I'm concerned the daphne season is over way too fast.

My dearest friend Sandy moved away down the South Island earlier this year & I miss her dreadfully.
Before she left she gave me a big bucketful of bulbs, mainly daffodils. I picked out some large sized ones & planted them in my wheelbarrow as the begonias I had in there were not doing well.  I am so delighted with my daffy display & think of Sandy every time I walk past it, & smile 💛

A couple of Saturday's ago I attended a workshop out at The Floral Shed.  Very longtime readers of my blog will remember Nita when she first opened the Hummingbird - I wrote a blog post on it *here*.  Nita has now established a large garden at her rural property, opened a Shop there, as well as supplying Florists & running Workshops.  When I saw a space available in the Birdhouse making one, I put my name down without thinking too hard about it.
Driving out there I felt a little anxious as I did not know any of the other ladies doing the workshop. 
Seeing it all set up around the work table, I felt immediately inspired.  My first attempt came together quite quickly but then I realised I'd put my sides on wrongly ... Nita easily recitified this & gave me a new kit.  It was so much fun banging in nails - you actually had to hit them really hard to go into the wood.

The photo above was taken by Ayla who does photography & social media for Nita via her own business fablefolknz 
I was so totally engrossed in drilling that I did not know it was being taken but I did ask Ayla for permission to use her photo in my post, which she very kindly gave me.   

After our birdhouses were assembled we all stopped for a delicious morning tea.  Look at that food - I can attest that it was amazing!

After morning tea the fun part (for me) began when we got to decorate & embellish our birdhouses.  Nita had a great array of rustic bits & bobs for us to choose from.  Some ladies kept theirs quite plain, others went over the top - they all looked wonderful.

(That is me second from the right for those that don't know me 😉)

Although I knew none of the other ladies I think I hit the jackpot because they were all just so lovely & friendly, inspiring & fun to be with.  Here we all are, so proud of our birdhouses - we all agreed that it was indeed a wonderful way to spend a morning & that we don't do this sort of thing for ourselves, often enough. 

Here is my finished birdhouse - I wanted to add the No 91 to it because - well that is my address! I found some silver numbers that you put on birthday cakes & painted them matt black.  I just adore my birdhouse in all its "rustic-ness".  I would do another workshop with Nita in a heartbeat. 

Currently I have it sitting on my deck area under my vintage Mangle.  

My lovely friend Shirley was visiting so I made some banana & white chocolate muffins as I had banana's turning brown.  A few days later I was hunting for a caramel slice recipe online & came across a new-to-me recipe  Caramel Anzac Slice. It sounded divine & as I had all the ingredients, I made it up.  By the amount of pieces that have passed my lips I can certainly attest that it was delicious 😏

I would like to be able to say that we have harmonious relations in our furry family but I would not be telling the truth.  Thankfully Little One can go outside now & it's made my life a little easier.  I bring him in about 5 o'clock & he has a rest by the fire before causing havoc for the rest of the evening, then bedtime.  You can see by the blue arrow he hides under this unit, thinking he is invisible. We don't as yet allow him in the lounge as it gives Pippi & Blackie a room to get away from him.  He of course, has other ideas!

Pippi is "milking it for all it's worth" & knows I will allow her on the things she is not usually allowed on, for example my Mums good mohair throw blanket.  I still live in hope but I must admit - it's wearing thin some days  😖

My chocolate addiction consumption continues & this arrived in my inbox yesterday sent from The Mr. I think it was supposed to make me feel better .... it did not  😉

Thank you as always dear friends, for your visits here today,
Enjoy the rest of the week & remember to be kind to yourselves & each other,
With much love & friendship to you all,
Julie & the furry three x0x0x0


  1. Lovely catch up Julie. The birdhouse is brilliant, what a great idea. They do look like a nice bunch of ladies. The photograph of your drilling is so good! The food looks good but oh that table! I love it. xx

  2. I love the smell of Daphne too. The birdhouse workshop sounds fun. I love how your house turned out. That cheeky Little One but he is very cute. xx

  3. We've had some fab workshops advertised here this summer but they're so cost prohibitive I've had to decline. Very tempting though, especially the ones that are within walking distance.l but I just couldn't justify the expense, not knowing what the winter will bring. Your birdhouse is really lovely. My neighbours gave me their old wobbly birdhouse at the start of summer which I was going to upcycle but just haven't had any time so far. Retirement's going well!xx

  4. What a wonderful post Julie - and it was lovely to see some photos of you - that black and white one is stunning!! Sounds like a wonderful morning! Your bord house looks gorgeous
    The Caramel Anzac Slice sounds as though I may have to look it up - although to make it in this house, it needs to be adapted to be gluten/dairy free, but my daughter is now a whizz at that!
    We still have the 'cat wars' going on here too, with the kitten constantly annoying the old boy...

  5. The bird house work shop sounds such fun and the morning tea looked amazing. Cats rule, wherever they are in the house.

  6. You did a great job on the birdhouse. Keep telling yourself it will get easier (eventually) with the cats, even if they only grow just to tolerate each other. I'm totally with you on the chocolate - well, we all need something as a treat, don't we?!
    Have a good rest of the week
    Best wishes

  7. Ah! Bless! HeHe! :).
    The bird boxes look amazing Julie..Any birdie would
    proud to own one for a summer, and raise it's young!
    And having numbers on them, they won't make any
    mistakes on where they live..! :).

    I bought a little converted post box, some years ago,
    and put it up outside, above the dining room window,
    in and under the Virginia's been there for
    three years, not a look in, not even a birdie looked
    at's just remained empty...! :(.
    Oh! Well..perhaps next year...! :).

    Still a problem with the furry ones Julie...Ah! Bless!
    HeHe! Cats will be cats...let them get on with it....
    Keep stocking up with chocolate, keep yer mind off
    the furry three..! :).
    HeHe! Chocolate..Dinosaurs....
    Do you know..Polar bears can't eat 'penguins'...Why?
    Because they can't get the wrappers of...! :O).

  8. Oh Julie, love the posh bird houses. My Eastern Blue Birds, who are raising their 3rd brood right now would love
    an update on their house. Now if I put it down low like you, my wrens would move right in with a million tiny
    sticks and lay eggs. Typical winter wind down, fire inside and daffs outside. At least that helps it move along.
    I feel like my summer, which is still going to be overly hot next week, is blown away with this hand. I'm back to
    walking like it was winter, lol. Sweet Miss Pip deserves the best fur now according to Precious. Lynn

    1. Thank you so much Lynn & Precious. I have been thinking of you all week & wondering how the hand was mending. It will slow you down/hinder you for awhile but remember to take care of yourself. xx

  9. Hey Julie. I have never heard of Daphne. Will Google it. It sure is pretty and if it smells good too! What a wonderful workshop. The birdhouses look so sturdy and nice and beautifully decorated, and the food that was served. Wow! Wish someone would have something like that around here. That would be fun. Those kitty cats! Keep the chocolate on hand. Little One sure is pretty. You have such cozy, beautiful rooms. I always enjoy your posts so much.

  10. Quite a few people now have mentioned their Daphne bushes & how lovely the smell. I'm feeling like i should get one now :) :) The workshop sounds wonderful & all the birdhouses look lovely. Like Henny i wish someone around here would do something like that. Love the daffs in the barrow, spectacular. Oh the muffins & slice look so yummy.

  11. I have never heard of Daphne. I asked my florist daughter if she had ever come across it, but it was a new one to her, too.
    The birdhouse building looks like such fun. Each one so unique, but all of them are beautiful. I smiled when I saw the house number on yours. A nice touch. And what a beautiful photo of you working on yours.
    The muffins and the slice sound delicious and kind of decadent. I would love to try and make the slice gluten free, but I am off sugar again for a while. Maybe for the holidays sometime I will give it a try.
    Too bad the kitties are still misbehaving with each other. If only you could reason with them. Yeah, right!
    I'll have to keep that in mind about chocolate and dinosaurs. We wouldn't want to become extinct!!

  12. Fabulous bird house ... and what a fun way to spend a day.... I love Daphne but it doesnt seem to want to grow here - perhaps it is too hot and dry....

  13. Ps forgot to say that I have managed to cultivate a cutting of Daphne this year. I absolutely love the fragrance from the flowers.

  14. Wow great job on your birdhouse Julie, I think all the ladies did amazing jobs, its a pity about the pussycats, fingers crossed they learn to get along.

  15. Such a lovely birdhouse. You always make such lovely items.

    God bless.

  16. Great post , full of goodies , love the bird house's what fun.
    You do live such a full life . Love seeing what you have been up to.
    Have a fun week hugs June,

  17. What fun!!!
    Oh girl, eat the chocolate with joy for God said everything He made was good, and besides, the cocoa bean is a vegetable! Your cats always crack me up! 🤣

  18. Your birdhouses are beautiful Julie, what a great class to do. The morning tea looked scrumptious! Your baking sounds wonderful too. Oh those cats!! Enjoy the chocolate I say!!

  19. Magic time out making the birdhouses! They are beautiful, nice that you didn't have to organise it either....just turn up & create! Cat mischief in your household...yikes, one is bad enough. I know how you feel about missing a good friend when they move away, your daffy wheel barrow is a sweet reminder. xox

  20. Oh my goodness Julie that birdhouse is superb, it would have been a lot of fun putting it together and the company of other people.What a wonderful place to go to and think of nothing else but the pure enjoyment of the togetherness of like minded people.I do hope the furr babies get together soon and live in harmony.I've been eating a bit much chocolate lately, today woke up with a migraine so know why that happened. Will have to find something else now, maybe crisps!!!! lots of extra salt.!! Those muffins you made were really lovely. It's lovely and sunny weather Julie and sooo enjoyable, the gardens are looking lovely and very Spring. Lots of Tuis out and about getting drunk on the nectar from the huge cherry tree in our property.Love it.Hugs.

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