Week 16 of frugal living

This week has been a bit bleak for all of us. It seems that Victoria is getting further and further behind in the economy with all the lockdowns. And it seems that Britain is about to have their lockdowns as they have gone over 500,000 coronavirus cases. They, too, will have their pubs shut and overnight stays banned. People complain about how bad it is here; well, wait until you see what’s over there. Portugal is the same thing too, and the London situation is getting worse, not better.

This week we had steak and chips for dinner. The steak was $14 at Woolies for two small pieces, and then we had to buy another packet just to feed the three of us. Then another day, we had homemade hamburgers with the $1 bag of buns from Coles.

We grow broad beans and the like, so we have had some salads. For one of the dinners, we had a pancake with red cabbage on top. We were still hungry after that, so we had mini party pies from the freezer.

It was Cafe SMART’s homelessness week and some of the cafes supported their campaign. I did buy a coffee to show them some support.

On the cool days, I have had some oats. I also enjoyed some black tea to remember a family member who had passed away. We can’t see them due to Coronavirus.

It looks like online shopping for a little while longer as the shops won’t open for a while yet. This week I bought a pair of Skechers shoes for $50 online.

Buddha’s stir fry

Are you trying to go vegetarian? If so this might be a great dish for you. This would be a great Meatless Monday dish.

This stir fry has the Chinese wood ear mushrooms, shitake mushrooms, Chinese mushrooms, bean sprouts, tofu, ginger, snowpeas, and the like. You can have it with rice. This video is from The Art of Cooking on Youtube.

You can get the Wood Ear mushrooms and the Chinese mushrooms from your local Asian grocery store. They come in the dried form so you might have to soak these for a few hours before using.

You would have this dish with rice or noodles.

Keeping your skin dry with QV skincare

It is almost summer in Victoria, and summer for us means that it will be hot and dry. In Victoria, we have to wear a mask when we are outside of our home. This will be made mandatory for all of the summer until we can find a vaccine.

Many people, including myself, get dehydrated skin underneath the mask. When it is hot, we sweat a lot and become really dehydrated. One way of looking after our skin is to drink lots of water, but most people don’t like this idea of drinking 2-4L of water. In the summer, we should be drinking about 4L of water. 1 L of water can be found in our fresh fruits and vegetables, depending on how you cook them.

But then there is QV skincare. They are for all skin types, including the most sensitive ones. You can find them at Chemist Warehouse and other good pharmacies. I have been using them for a while now. My skin has been moist, and I have no rash. My skin is sensitive.

Most people use disposable masks, which I find dries out their skin really easily. I use the best cotton ones.

Now that you have to wear masks a lot, it’s best not to wear any makeup under the mask. You are beautiful, just as you are.

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

The Power of Now is a book about positivity, hope, and changing your way of thinking. Powell (Medium.com) also read the book and shares his views on it. Most of the time, during COVID, we are very negative people towards each other.

The book must be read in complete silence to really appreciate spirituality and calmness.

During COVID, we need to feel the pain but find a way out of that pain and suffering that we feel. The book uses simple language to entice us to be more spiritual and kind. It is a small book that you can take anywhere.

You need to enjoy being in the present moment and not create problems for yourself. Problems and fears are illusions. True wealth and happiness are inside you. The book talks about being open and being connected to the world around you and yourself. You should learn to love yourself. “If you can’t love yourself, how do you expect to love others?”You yourself deserve your love and affection as much as mentions this. Just learn to enjoy your own company. Go places by yourself.

It talks about being present in the now. People who are not in the now are always negative. For example, the COVID anti maskers. They think that COVID is a scam. But it actually isn’t. People create fear by having what-if moments. People always procrastinate, and fear is the reason. If people were just in the present moment, they would be living.

Waiting is a state of mind. We constantly wait for things to happen rather than be proactive about it.

And then it talks about the female pain which is always felt at that time of the month. We should be more sympathetic towards women at this time. Most women know how to handle their pain, and they do it well. But we should live in the now, which is mostly uncertainty due to COVID19.

We all must learn to live in the present moment and find a way out of our psychological and physical pain. We must also learn to be proactive and take action when we can

How to manage your energy better

We talk about ways to manage your energy better, even though we are all in isolation. If we don’t manage our energy well, we lose productivity, and our mental health goes down the drain.

Most people are now working at home or looking for jobs which will take up their time and energy. So here are some ways to help you manage your energy better during the day.

I know that this is a difficult situation for most but try to be as positive as possible. Extreme Limitz Photography mentions that positive energy brings out the best in people. 

Work out when you are the most energetic.

For some people, it can be morning, and for others, it can be at night. Work out what’s best for you. We all have different bodies and rhythms and know when we are most energetic.

And don’t force it. Some days you might not be as energetic.

Set goals for the day

Most people can get more done in a day if they set some goals. Your goals should be specific and measured. Work out what you can achieve during the day. You should work this out over breakfast

Eat breakfast

Even though you are in isolation, it doesn’t mean that you can skip breakfast. If you skip breakfast, then you lose productivity.


We need about 150-300 mins of exercise, and we should always move more. If you’re allowed outside, then that is great. But if not, you can download the Les Mills on Demand and do the workouts inside your own house

Sleep well

Dr. Wadeson says we need about 7-9 hours of sleep a night to function properly during the day.

Treat yourself every now and then.

Buy something online that you like. It doesn’t have to be food. It can be a new pair of shoes or some bath bombs (Bustle.com). Something that will encourage you to take care of yourself is a good idea.

Our COVID safe guide to picnics

Here is our COVID safe guide to picnics. In Melbourne, we are allowed to have picnics within a certain distance of our home. We can only have this with no more than 5 people from two households.

So here are some tips for enjoying your picnic safely.


Make sure that you are wearing a face mask.

In Melbourne, everyone must do so, and you can be fined for this.

Buy all your picnic needs from your local Mercato (or corner store).

By buying from there, you support small businesses and help them pay all of their costs. Usually, the corner store is open at certain times and on weekends.

Don’t wander around to other picnics.

You are supposed to stay 1.5 meters away from the other groups. The other groups will not be happy with you.

Throw your mask out properly

Don’t litter in the park. It’s not cool, and there are fines for this. Plus, if the birds eat it, they could choke on the loopholes. It is an environmental hazard

Wait until you get home to throw your mask out. Before throwing away, make sure that you cut the loops off

Make sure that you have some hand sanitizer

You can buy some small hand sanitizer online, or you can buy them from a local store. The small hand sanitizer should fit in your bag or basket.

Wear an adult nappy

The queues to the toilets might belong, and sometimes it may be dirty. If you wear an adult nappy, you can go in there, and it doesn’t matter as there is no smell. I love the Tena nappies that you can buy from your local pharmacy. For a small price, it is worth it. It is more hygienic that way

Don’t get too drunk

Yes, picnics have alcoholic drinks, but that’s no excuse to get drunk. Know your limits. If you get drunk, you might accidentally wander off to somewhere where you shouldn’t be.

World Mental Health Day

On October 10th is World Mental health day, and we are celebrating like no other. We are locked in our homes and are only allowed out once a day for two hours.

Hence this day will be one about not going on social media a lot. During the pandemic, people were at home a lot, and social media was huge. Social media has the tendency to drive us down and encourage self-harm. In Britain alone, there was a surge in the number of depression and anxiety cases this year due to lockdowns.

Britain is not alone in this, with the US having triple the rates of depression. The CNBC has reported that 1 in 4 adults are now experiencing depression.

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Yessss! About time! I feel for you guys! Many place have too many #antimaskers out there and its time to speak out! All the cafes should do the same Reposted from @beanbastardcoffee To the anti-masker entering my store today and the future: If you refuse to take into consideration the health and well-being of others, feel free to stay the f&+! out of my store and call your order in. Our staff will gladly bring your order out to you, with a tissue. Also, it's the f$&+ing law. Thank you. – Mr Bastard . . . #coffee #coffeeaddict #coffeelover #coffeeholic #coffeeroaster #coffeeshop #cafe #caffeine #butfirstcoffee #espresso #latte #lattelove #localcoffeeshop #buffalocoffee #buffalocoffeeshops #nickelcity #buffalove #yeahbuffalo #risebflo #stepoutbuffalo #supportlocalbusiness #shopsmall #shoplocal #ifyoubuildittheywillcome #antimasker #wearthemask #yeshavesome #wearafuckingmask

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Today was a lovely sunny day in  Melbourne. Here we applaud all the cafes and businesses who refuse service to antimaskers and implore them to speak out about this as well as kick them out. I know of one cafe that’s already done in Melbourne, and in the US, this cafe called “Beanbastardcoffee” spoke out about it. Abuse towards staff and other people is not acceptable. In one way or another, we are all in the same boat.

And in the last month alone, due to these antimaskers, I have been abused a few times for not wearing a mask. I am a runner, and as runners, we don’t have to wear a mask. On my jogs, I have been abused for such things. Abuse is never acceptable: it just makes that person depressed and worried, and we don’t need this.

Surviving self isolation whereever you are

So you have to self isolate for 14 days? Whether its at home or in a hotel, self isolation and quarantine are really boring and you cannot leave your place. So what do you do in the 14 days? We have some tips here

Keep a schedule

That means waking up and going to bed at the same time. Also, shower at the same time. Dry shampoo is your friend. Don’t watch Netflix all day.  Learn some new skills, whether that would be to play guitar

Move regularly

Even though you can’t go outside, there are lots of ways to exercise in the home. In some hotels, you might be able to go outside in a designated area. You can do yoga, tai chi, meditation, or other things that don’t require much. Do download the Les Mills on Demand app.

Do recognize that not all foods are created equal.

Just because you have 24/7 to the snack cabinet does not mean that you can grab whatever you want out for there. Most of the time, the meals will be delivered to your room, and you might have a menu, so choose wisely. Do eat your vegetables every day.

Oh, and don’t forget to hydrate too. Hydration is important for a healthy mind and a healthy body.

Get some natural sunlight.

And that means opening a window each day. Or going outside onto your balcony if you have. You  could do yoga outside,

COVID19 misinformation

  1. “We’re not just fighting an epidemic; we’re fighting an infodemic.”
, Director-General of the World Health Organization

“There are so much misinformation and fake news about COVID19 on social media” (Song, Elisa. “Coronavirus (COVID-19): What a Pediatrician Wants You to Know.” Integrative Medicine, vol. 19, no. 2, InnoVision Health Media, Inc., Apr. 2020, p. 28.). We have seen how damaging that is when we saw the Social Dilemma. This is so much so that the fake news is called an Infodemic.

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I actually like the curfew, the masks and going shopping by yourself! These should stay Reposted from @juliettepowerauthor We ARE NOT IN THIS TOGETHER. I refuse to participate in government and media lies and manipulation by proven liars. I will not live through lies and tyrannical politicians (you may have noticed. 😂) Nup. Nah. No way José. Ain't doing it! 🤣 Prior to March 2020 I steered away from posting political or controversial content. 2020 pushed me, as it has many others. We have a choice: accept Gov and pharmaceutical marketing spin, or call it out. Thier lies shine brightly for anyone to see. If they choose to. The image is by @chriskirckof His words reflect how I feel. Good work Chris. How do you feel about 2020? #corona #charade #circus #campaign #covid #cult #hoax #scam #marketing #agenda21 #salesslogans #salespitch #allinthistogether #maskup #washyourhands #staysafe #socialdistancing #slaves #tyranny #dictatorship #directives #laws #rules #lockdown #martiallaw #government #corruption #isntitobvious #melbourne #freevictoria

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These days, we are spending way too much time on social media because we are all at home. We use it to watch the news that people share online. The WHo mentions that there is so much misinformation out there about a cure.

People online say that COVID is a hoax and encourages others not to wear face masks and go about our normal business. I had seen many posts before I went on a 14-day detox. These days I am still seeing them.

Pennycook (2019) says that fighting these fake news and misinformation is a challenge. And it is a challenge now that we have the pandemic going.

How can we fight this misinformation?

Stay informed by listening to actual Government advice on things. The actual Government things are on the nightly news and in the newspapers. Also, read lots of online scholarly articles and books rather than the trash you find on Facebook.

As professionals, we should stay akin to the latest developments on COVID19 and flag articles and inappropriate things.

Together we can fight this misinformation online and stop the spread of COVID.

Things to do with mushrooms

This article was written for Mushroom Day which is on the 15th of October.

It is mushroom season and mushrooms are full of the essential vitamins and minerals that we need. Here are some ways with mushrooms.

How to prepare mushrooms?

Mushrooms are really simple to do. With the dried Asian mushrooms that you buy in the Asian stores, you probably do need to soak them for a little bit in a bowl of water

There are many different types of mushrooms from the Japanese shitake, the Australian mushroom to the Chinese mushroom that we have during Chinese New Year

Mushroom salad

This is really easy to do and you can do it with just about anything you have at home.

Udon noodles with mushroom

This recipe is from Cooking with Chef Dai

Homemade mushroom pizza

Here you can use truffle oil for this. You can buy the pizza-making kit from supermarkets and I got the recipe from Heidi Larsen

Scrambled eggs and mushrooms

Just simply sauteed them in a pan and put it with scrambled eggs for breakfast. And then you add toast with your scrambled eggs and mushrooms.