Thursday, December 17, 2009

Sustainability Declaration Explained

Section one of the new Sustainability Declaration is all about the Energy Efficiency of your home:
Questions like how many out of the total number of lights in your home are energy efficient.
Do you have solar power, Gas, air conditioning, pool or spa, what type of hot water system, insulation where and what type, window glazing , roof colour, roof ventilation and ceiling fans.
Section two is aboout Water and has 7 questions:
Is there a rainwater tank and what size?, greywater, water recirculation,shower heads, type of taps,dual flush toilets,garden irrigation.
Section three is about Access:
and has six questions - entry level, steps etc, level access to bathrooms and toilets and living areas, grab rails in bathroom and level entry to shower, toilet grab rails, wide doorways and wide hallways. Very pertinent for an aging population
Section four:
Safety five questions :
Smoke alarm installed (on standard REIQ contract anyway), Electrical safety switch also on standard REIQ contract, Pool fence maintained, Hot water system tempering device installed, Property number clearly visible from street (for emergency services)
The questions are set out simply and are easy to answer and very logical and the type of things we should know about our new homes.
There is also a column on the right that tells you what the savings for various things are.
As I mentioned before there has been some opposition to this form and there are petitions circulating right now to stop or curb it - I think we all need to get on board and support this initiative it takes not too long to complete (yes my husband and I did it for our house - it took about 20 minutes plus a few minutes searching receipts and paper work to confirm a few things and fill in the kilowatt usage from which you calculate your green house gas emissions).
Go to the website and check out the form and then give it a go fill it in and see how your house rates. Then get back here or go to my facebook page and let me know how you did.
If you have joined The Green Streets forums you will have no problem answering these questions.
Until next time

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas Recipes

Okay Recipes it is, seeing as I don't have time to cook it would seem appropriate!!

For the next 25 days you will get a recipe from somewhere around the world relevant to this time of year some traditional Christmas Fare, some not so traditional for us, but for someone and in line with my God/universe/whatever you believe in philosophy - some from left of the Western Christmas field.

But we will start with traditional Christmas Cake

But whose? Australian, Middle Eastern, Asian ? This may take more than one recipe folks!!

So heres mine - think it is an old Australian Womens Weekly Recipe:


3 cups (500g) sultanas
½ cup (100g) glacé cherries
1½ cups (250g) raisins chopped coarsely
1½ cups (115g) seeded dates, chopped coarsely
½ cup (125g) glacé apricots, chopped coarsely
½ cup (125g) glacé pineapple, chopped coarsely
¼ cup (85g) orange marmalade
¾ cup (180ml) Grand Marnier (or brandy or rum or all three!!!! and some for the cook)
250g butter, softened
¾ cup (165g) firmly packed dark brown sugar
4 eggs (duck eggs if you can get them)
2 cups (300g) plain flour
2 teaspoons mixed spice
1 cup (160g) roasted almonds, chopped coarsely
¼ cup (60ml) Grand Marnier ( or rum or brandy and more for the cook!!!!)

Combine fruit, marmalade and liqueur in large bowl; mix well, cover tightly with plastic wrap. Store mixture in cool, dark place overnight or up to a week, stirring every day.Preheat oven to 150°C/130°C fan-forced. Line base and sides of deep 19cm-square cake pan with two layers of brown and two layers of baking paper, bringing paper 5cm above sides. Beat butter and sugar in small bowl with electric mixer until just combined. Add eggs one at a time, beating until just combined between additions. Add the butter mixture to fruit mixture; mix well. Stir in sifted flour and spice, then nuts. Spread mixture into pan. Bake about 3 hours. Brush top of cake with extra liqueur. Cover hot cake tightly with foil, turn cake upside down; cool in pan.

Off to research a recipe for tomorrow!!!!!!!!!!

Enjoy your day