Thursday, 12 November 2015

Lucky lucky lucky - free stuff

Hello. It was my lucky day yesterday. What is better than reduced yellow sticker bananas? Free bananas of course. Yes, I got five free bananas. I was walking up the High Street and paused to read the notices in the village shop window. The door opened and the owner stepped outside with the said bananas. She was about to throw them in the bin  when she hesitated and asked if I wanted them. I was amazed that she was going to chuck them, the only thing wrong with them was the skins had started to darken a little. I gratefully accepted, and was chuffed that I was there at that moment. One eaten, four to go. 
This is a second hand house brick. I have been looking for some of these for a month or two. At a guess  about 200 would do the job I have in mind. Another stroke of luck yesterday. The house opposite has been undergoing a renovation, it's taking ages because there's only a couple of workers on the job. The front looks pretty much finished and now they are starting on the back garden. A skip has appeared and I asked the owner who is supervising the work if he was chucking out any bricks. He said he was, but they were mostly broken as they took a wall out with a jack hammer.

I could see the skip filling up so I had a nosy what was in it. Some of the bricks looked fine to me, a bit chipped, and caked in cement, but that would come off with a hammer. I had a word with the man working there and he said take what you want. So I did. I took my wheelbarrow and cleaned the bricks up before I loaded them in. 20 bricks are a bit heavy to push along but I only had to cross the road and take them to my back garden.

I ran out of daylight yesterday so I went back this morning and got some more. 77 so far, and the man showed me another pile which I can have, he will get his mate to bring them to the front tomorrow. They are taking out an ordinary window and putting in patio doors, so all the bricks below the window have to be removed. Lucky me that I don't have to transport them far, and they are free. Just think, they are about 60 years old, and I am going to use them again. Good bit of recycling there, Hugh would be proud.

This is what I am going to do with them. The pallets around my raised beds are rotting so I am going to take them out and replace them with bricks. I want to make the beds smaller and sow grass seeds between them so I can get the mower around them. At the moment they are too close together. Then I'm going to plant them up with flowers and shrubs which the slugs don't like. It will make a nice view from the summerhouse.

I ran up a couple of shopping bags today, these are particularly suitable for the male fraternity. 
Have guess what these are? No they are not pasties, not even pastry of any kind, nor pasta, in fact not edible at all. I took these shoulder pads out of a garment I bought at a charity shop. As the plan was to cut it up, I didn't need the pads, but what to do with them. I put them with the cleaning materials under the sink, and today I had an idea, I could use them for washing up, instead of a cloth. And it works. They are just the right size to swish around inside pots and pans, and they easily wring out with one hand. Useful for cleaning inside the microwave, and wiping down the top of the cooker. Give it a try if you have any from redundant clothing.

It's been a lovely day today, I had a line of washing blowing in the sunshine, and I got the mower out and went over the back lawn picking up all the fallen leaves. More bricks to collect tomorrow, yippeeeee, then I can get on with the job.

Thanks for popping in. Catch you soon. Toodle pip


  1. Ilona, you never cease to amaze me! Great find!

  2. Nice one! Bricks are always useful around the garden. I used them to put large plant pots on for drainage. Debbie

  3. Ilona, I love your brick recycling! And shoulder pads always remind me of my mum, removing shoulder pads from a jacket in the 80s and saying she hated them!

  4. Hi Ilona,lovely to see your house bricks with LBC stamped on them.My late FiL who passed away on Monday used to work for London Brick Company at Stewartby in Bedfordshire and was like you a lorry driver and he transported bricks on the back of his 16 wheeler lorry to various building sites around the country then after unloading his bricks by hand he would drive to the mines to collect coal which he transported back to the brick yard ready for the production of more bricks.He was a lorry driver for LBC for 39 years and had many tales to tell.Looking forward to seeing your project at completion...Wendy

  5. What a day! I echo mikemax's words! JanF

  6. Well done Ilona. Free bricks just wonderful, you are so good. Like the idea for using them, can't wait to see.

  7. I hope all goes well with this project...When my banana skins darken, I peel the bananas and put them in the freezer to use in smoothies, oatmeal or in baking. No waste and they still taste good.

  8. Those bananas look good to me. I don't like them green or even solid yellow. When they get a few spots I find them perfect for eating.

    What a great deal on the bricks. You can't beat free. I spy Heidi in the photo of your raised beds.

    Yes indeed I have some shoulder pads removed from garments. Right now they are in my sewing closet. I'll try using one for cleaning.

  9. Great score on the free bricks - it pays to be on the lookout. I don't understand why anyone would throw those bananas out. If bananas get too dark I freeze them skin off and collect them to make banana muffins. The darker the better for those.

  10. Well! For once I'm totally jealous! Over bricks. :D I love old bricks. Lucky you!

  11. Can't wait to see your new brick construction. Excellent, bricks are always worth having!

  12. Hi.Fantastic freebie find with those "vintage "bricks,Ilona.I love the character of them and they'll be a nice building material for the raised beds...very classic.Hubby just bought bananas that look to be about in the same condition your free ones are.He says they have so much more flavour when good and ripe.Any blackened ones here go into the freezer to be used in muffins,oatmeal etc.I do have a dairy free recipe for faux frozen yogurt using almond ,soy milk and bananas and other ingredients that I found online..haven't tried it our yet,but over ripe ones would be good for that too,I think"Waste not want not" as the saying goes.Hard to believe that your free ones were being thrown out.Jeepers!Love your shoulder pad dishe cloth/scrubber idea.I've also used them in between fragile items when packing and storing things,sprayed them with essential oil to put in cupboards and drawers for a nice smell when the "tussie mussies" (sachets) lose their potency.Bye for now,D.


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