Perks of Ponder


If you give people nothingness, they can ponder what can be achieved from that nothingness.

Tadao Ando

But, when the work was finished, the Craftsman kept wishing that there were someone to ponder the plan of so great a work, to love its beauty, and to wonder at its vastness.

Giovanni Pico della Mirandola

For RUDE the perks of our ponderings mostly arise from our frugal lifestyle.  The happiness of what we do and share,  to be able to create with our hands and spend large chunks of time at home, the inspiration that we get from social media and elsewhere, to name a few, are some of our perks.

Before RUDE Girl writes this weekly blog post, I do a few hours of pondering.  It is never planned, just pondered.  All sorts of ideas come into my head during the morning.  And then without much thought, I start to write about nothing much that turns into something eventually.  I like the challenge of what is reflected in Ando’s quote above.  And that’s achieving from nothingness with a good old ponder.

I also ponder about busy people I know.  Do they have the time to ponder?  I am grateful that I have a lot of time to ponder, and mostly it’s about sharing what we do, in interesting and creative ways.   What have I been pondering of late?

RUDE has a wedding to attend this month and the dress is formal.  When you stay at home most of your clothes are casual.  Whilst I have a few formal outfits, it’s a creative exercise for me, to attempt to curate a new outfit from nothingness or not much at all.

I started pondering about a ‘new to me’ secondhand outfit, after coming across this image.  The look is not me but there is something about it.



What is it that speaks to me?  The black sheer blouse, and what I thought was a skirt but are palazzo pants, made me ponder.  And from my ponderings came a desire to find a black see-through blouse, for next to nothing, and in a short time frame.  As if!!

I am not so keen on the high waist palazzo pants, let alone sequins, so I will more than likely wear a skirt from my vintage collection.

But to find a sheer black blouse was in the back of my mind but certainly not in the front of it.  RUDE Boy and I were out grocery shopping and decided to look on the $1 racks outside a charity shop.  I was not much in the mood, and most of the garments were pretty ordinary.

I had finished  looking at one rack, and was not going to look at the clothes on the other rack.  However, I decided to look just in case I found a diamond in the rough.  And lo and behold, yes, you guessed it!  There was my black sheer blouse!  And it was sunray pleated for goodness sake!



A Very Very brand black sheer blouse


AND, get a load of this Very Very information here

Sometimes the universe has a wonderful way of listening to our ponderings and providing very very nice surprises.  The charity shop had marked down my Very Very blouse from $6 to $1.  I could hardly breathe when we found each other.  And now knowing that it is designed and made in Australia, I am gobsmacked.

Beat The Man by embracing the perks of pondering!



M Magazine Sunday Age August 21, 2016

Blog Day & Pizza Nite


RUDE has been busy converting old VHS tapes to a digital format.  This has to be undertaken in real time.  It takes many hours and a lot of patience to listen to my deceased father, God rest is soul, talk non-stop for 40 hours!

Seriously, I am very glad he recorded never seen before footage of the family.  And in the following months, I am going to be editing this footage into short digital stories.  I am planning to share my digital recreations with family in the form of ‘experience’ gifts for their birthdays and Christmas.

Anyways, whilst we have been going back to the 80’s and 90’s playing videos, RUDE Boy mentioned that I needed a new longer lasting battery, for my video camera.  It was purchased off Ebay and has been wonderful but the small battery is inefficient.

The new battery cost $70 [including postage and handling].  Yes, we actually bought something new!

According to the advice, it was best for this new battery, to be flattened twice before use.  We could have just let the video camera run and not engage.  However, I was never going to ignore the camera.  The opportunity was there do actually make recordings of something not nothing.  And I did.  There is about 60 minutes of us hamming it up, with no intention of sharing it.

Of course, RUDE Girl loves nothing better than to share, and I thought some five minute video vignettes, would serve as an anthropological study on how people [us] in the 21st century interacted with each other over pizza.  Well, maybe not so much that but what a noble reason, hey!

I thought back to my Dad’s old videos, and what parts took my attention.  It was the footage of family interacting over a meal, talking about nothing much at all.  For me those moments in time, were heaps more meaningful to us, than Paris at night or the Palace of Versailles.

Below is a five minute video of a chat we had over pizza whilst running the battery flat.  This is part 2 and there could be more parts to come for posterity.

Beat the Man and make your own healthy and cheap in-house pizza!  And dare to dance afterwards, to work off the calories.


Pizza Nite Invite



A RUDE Pepperoni and Mushroom Pizza


Pizza makes me think that anything is possible.  Henry Rollins

I will always eat pizza! Always. Dylan Penn

Tomorrow is Friday in the RUDE household.  That means blog day and pizza night.

Part 2 of the above video, with us chatting about nothing much at all, while we flatten our video camera’s new battery, will feature on tomorrow’s Friday blog post.

Come and join us for homemade pizza, a drink and a ‘nothing much at all’ insight into Friday nights at the RUDE dining table, in Melton, Melbourne, Australia.

And the irony is, RUDE Guys eat our homemade pizza at the dining table with candlelight, on wooden boards and we use cutlery!  Not very rude, right?

Beat The Man and make your own pizza at home!!


Jacqui & Gene’s Healing Haven


RUDE’s friends Jacqui and Gene, just like Jack and Jill went up the hill.  But instead of collecting a pail of water, Jacqui and Gene renovated a house on a hill at Red Hill.  As for falling down, well some walls fell down!

This week’s guest blogger is Jacqui.  She shares with us, her and her husband Gene’s renovation story, that involved a huge commitment to reusing and recycling.

This is their ‘Healing Haven’ story as told by Jacqui

Less than a year ago, shortly after finding my way onto Facebook, I discovered the Rude Record Blog. I had no idea that there were fellow T.I.P. Boutique (tip shop), and Roadside Scavengers out there.

I’d had discovered two fellow travellers…..RUDE Girl and RUDE Boy.  These two had a frugal philosophy which they described as Scavenger Style.  A political statement against textile waste, a throw away society and planned obsolescence.  These two radical Eco Warriors were passionate recyclers, who maintained a very thrifty and modest lifestyle by making do, restoring and mending.

At the time I’d discovered Rude Record, Gene and I had just finish a long journey.  A journey out of the wilderness of serious illness and the resultant poverty.  At the end of our journey we’d found a wealth of good health and self sufficiency.

I’d like to share part of our story because I have found these RUDE Guys so inspirational in the light of our journey.

We needed a house.  We had big dreams and a small budget.  What we found was a dirty neglected slum with “good bones”.  It nestled in a rain forest with the village atmosphere we were looking for.  We rolled up our sleeves and set to work.


Before renovation


Because it was so very, very dirty and neglected, we couldn’t move in at once.  It was a solid cedar cottage with hardwood floors and concrete stumps.  This is what I meant by “good bones”.  I needed to use our small budget to pay tradesmen to sand and re-polish the filthy floors.  I needed a painter to come in and spray paint the entire interior.  Gene was still pretty frail and had very low immunity.  He needed protecting with loving care.

Before the painters and sanders could set to, I had work to do.

I gutted the crumbling kitchen and threw it into a skip strategically placed below the crumbling front porch.  I threw every bit of dextrose within the walls of that disgusting interior.  I looked into the bathroom.  Sadly l decided that we’d have to live with that until I could get to work and clean it.



Kitchen before renovation

My first journey into secondhand and make do, was to find some big doors. A tiny window needed to be a big sliding door to give access to the back garden.  I located a door through a builder for almost nothing.  I thought people would want to grab something so cheap and available.  But no, this sad reject became a big, light filled exit into our large, green, overgrown back garden.


I thought Gene who was still recuperating, could remove the window and cut the remaining wall down to the floor.  He put in a frame to make a nice space for my big door.  I hefted every bit of that wall and the crumbling window into the skip. We slid in the “new” sliding doors.  How delighted my lovely man was to find himself back in the land of “Yes I can!”.  He’d gotten used to being an invalid.  We were healing a house, and ourselves.

Back to our rented house and in with the sanders, polishers, and painters.

The floors, walls, and ceilings gleaming clean, finally we were able to move in.  We “camped” in our new home.  We proceeded to rebuilt our home around us.  Cooking with a microwave and camp stove we built the kitchen and I scrubbed that bathroom. Yuk!

We found an auction house which sold everything from floor coverings to electrical appliances.  We went, we raised our hands to bid, we discover gold. Stuff at knock down prices.  An oven, cook top, range hood, even a toilet and a kitchen sink.  We decided IKEA could provide new kitchen cupboards.

We’d get up each morning and set to work.  I’d haggle and negotiated with plumbers and electricians, to do those things that my very talented man was not allowed to do.

We built.  Hefted things into place.  Painted.  Pulled down small unnecessary walls.  We put in new doorways. We closed off others.  We made a doorway into the small extension.  We closed off the original doorway into this same extension.  We used the door from the old doorway and put it into the new doorway.  We filled the old doorway with a cupboard.  This cupboard then became the pantry in our new kitchen.  Look at the photos.  See if you can pick the new pantry and the new doorway.  I did all the cleaning up, heavy lifting and painting.  And Gene applied his expertise.



Kitchen after renovation

So, we continued along these lines.  We moved on to the bathroom.  We have very little money by now.  But, I wanted a hygienic, light, bright bathroom….hmm.  We pulled down the wall between the toilet and bathroom.  Zero cost.  We pulled up the dirty vinyl, off the hardwood floor.  Gene disconnected the toilet.  I took it all, and threw it into that skip.  Zero cost.  Remember that toilet from the auction rooms?  My lovely, now best friend, plumber, he installed that.


Out with the dirty, rusty hand basin and into the skip.  In with a gifted secondhand vanity unit I’d painted.  Zero cost.  I looked at the old stained bath.  What to do?  I got the professionals in to re-enamel it!  I finished the whole lot off by painting the old wall tiles with a specially developed painting system designed for exactly this purpose. Cost around $50. That’s very expensive paint!  Those tiles were still perfect 7 years later.  My beautiful new bathroom gleaming and on a shoestring budget!


Finally, outside those sliding door in the kitchen.  Remember those?  I won’t give a blow by blow description of the delightful back porch, my now,  fit and healthy man built. I’ll let the pictures do the talking.  Take a look at the walls.  They are built from the decking off that crumbling front veranda.  I de-nailed them.  I scrubbed them.  I painted them.  The before and after pictures tell a tale of the lovely back porch that Gene built!


There was a lot more that went into the rebuilding of this delightful home of ours. This is just an outline sketch of two years work.  Remaking, reclaiming, roadside scavenging, and visits to tip shops.  Gifted stuff that other people rejected, and buying secondhand.  A story of a journey where we found a wealth of good health and self sufficiency.


Thank you Jacqui and Gene for sharing all your hard work that made this house your cozy haven at Red Hill.  It is testimony to your resilience, in the face of adversity, that shines through in your story.

Beat the Man and find wealth in good health, self sufficiency and like-minded friendships!



Left to right:  Gene, RUDE Girl, Jacqui & RUDE Boy

The Art and Craft of Reuse and Repair

Good podcasting relies on narrative and idea. Does the plot have tension, drama and surprise?  Does it have universal themes?  Ira Glass

Following on from RUDE previous post, RUDE Girl’s talk with Adam Murray of Subtle Disruptors was posted yesterday afternoon.

You can listen to the podcast here.  And please, feel free to ask RUDE Girl any questions you may have, after listening to my interview with Adam.

images Podcast

Get the popcorn, sit back and enjoy listening


Subtle Disruptor

Simple definition of disrupt

to cause (something) to be unable to continue in the normal way : to interrupt the normal progress or activity of (something)

RUDE Girl believes, that for well over a decade, I have been interrupting the course of consumerism by refusing to shop for stuff in malls.  All my life, I have not been a great shopper.  I prefer to save my money for experiences and services.


RUDE Girl in 2015 volunteering at a community sewing group

There is some anecdotal evidence that a few people [already with like-minded tendencies] are being influenced by my efforts to disrupt normal progress when it comes to consumerism.

This week I talk and share with Adam Murray from Subtle Disruptors about my frugal life on the fringe of Melbourne’s outer suburb Melton and why.

And how with social media, [mostly via Facebook and WordPress] Rude Record is voluntarily sharing tips on reuse and repair of things and why.

Here is the photo of my studio where I was interviewed for Subtle Disruptors.  I hope you will tune in to the podcast this week.

Beat The Suburban Mall!

Savvy Saver Sue


RUDE Girl is relating to the above quote by Hugh MacLeod.  When I went to school the focus was on academic subjects.  I had very little idea there was any form of creativity within me.  I guess I determined this because I was not good at drawing!

It wasn’t until retirement six years ago that I realised it would be wise to get a hobby.  But what sort of hobby?  That’s when I started to ask for my crayons back.  Much like I imagine, my new found friend, Susan Denyer [Sue] from Bacchus Marsh has done.

Sue approached me to be a guest on Rude Record, and RUDE are thrilled to feature her this week.  As the blog title suggests, Sue is one very savvy money saving lady.  She excels at recycling the things others abandon and discard.  RUDE are good at recycling but Sue and her husband Michael are brilliant!

This is Savvy Sue’s Story

I love RUDE’s creativity and passion and their commitment to living a frugal life in harmony with the reduce, reuse, repair and recycle philosophy.  I love reading RUDE Girl’s interesting and entertaining  blog, and feeling part of an on-line community whose interests and recycling philosophy are similar to my own.

RUDE are a great example of what I call “radical recycling”. Buying from op shops is fairly mainsteam these days, whereas buying unloved items from TIP SHOPS is more extreme. I admire them for fixing up the less loved TIP SHOP items, and giving them a new home.

My husband, Michael and I retired two years ago, after a lifetime of living frugally.  We now have more time to devote to our passions of art, music and working for the environment.  We love to recycle.  My husband has renovated our Victorian house using secondhand materials, and our house and garden [photos below] are filled with secondhand finds.









I endeavour to use secondhand materials in my art projects.  I obtain these from op shops, garage sales, fetes, TIP SHOPS and friends. I have even found things lying on the ground which I have been able to use!


I am currently working on creating small mixed media works of art as part of the index card a day (ICAD) on-line art challenge.  Basically, participants create a piece of mixed media art on index cards every day in June and July, and many people video their results.

Rather than using new index cards, I cut out rectangles from old cereal packets and work on these instead. When complete, I glue the “index cards” into my A3 art journals.



Secondhand art materials, on my desk in my studio, ready to create an art journal to showcase my trip to Paris



Every month, I attend an art class at our local  Bunnings store in Melton.  The students wipe their brushes on baby wipes and I save these, dry them and then use them in my art [photos below].



The completed index cards [photos below] with painted baby wipes’ background.  The collaged words and images came from an Allure magazine obtained for free at the Melton TIP SHOP. The lace is an op shop find.

All the index cards have painted baby wipe backgrounds.  The textile background on the art journal page is upholstery fabric, as I was recently given some gorgeous upholstery samples that were destined for landfill.



Index cards with painted baby wipe backgrounds


Index card with painted baby wipe background


 I create art using recycled materials most days. This is mostly done for my own pleasure, but I also love to share my art journals with family and friends.   I have also been involved in community art projects using secondhand materials.  It is fun to see what other people create using natural and recycled materials.



Secondhand photo album, used as an art journal, with recycled table napkin on the cover


Thank you Sue for sharing your story and photos.  We are definitely like-minded souls. RUDE Girl, like Sue and her husband retired in my 50s, and RUDE boy went part-time over five years ago.

When Sue and RUDE Girl get together, we natter enthusiastically about reusing other people’s junk and rubbish.  Time just disappears, and that’s a good indication that in our retirements, we are both doing what we enjoy.

And RUDE are really glad to know, that Sue saves all the baby wipes from her art class at the local Bunnings warehouse, to create beauty not blockage.

Like Savvy Sue and her husband Michael,  Beat The Man by reusing and recycling what you can, to make beautiful art journals and garden vignettes.