Thursday, May 24, 2012

Fires, scarves, rice pudding

First Fire of the season is starting to become a little special tradition.
{see here and here too}

We collect the wood, make sure we have marshmallows, choose a good night, dim the lights and lay/sit on the ground and move the couches around.
{we did it as part of Family Home Evening this year}

All to remind ourselves that yes! we love this!
and to remember to try and do it more often throughout winter. More! More!

{A good reminder on being organized. No good wishing for fire and wood/kindling at night when you haven't collected it during the day!}

This year I am determined to make our fireplace actually radiate some heat. The lovely thing is pretty much for appearances only and does not actually heat our house in any form. I am determined to change that! I've researched and have a few ideas on how to make a 'gaping hole in the house' actually heat.  I thought I had come up with a temporary solution to cover part of the hole. It seemed to be working but alas smoke was filling the house. The fire alarms just wouldn't quit! We had to open all the doors and windows and run a fan to get them to turn off.

Negative result in attempting to heat my house with wood!!

Fireplace 1.....  Me 0

And four day later after being shut tight, the house has a hint of lovely burnt smoke smell.

But I'm going to keep trying
{well I will keep telling The Mr what he has to do to get us some heat!}

I also made my first baked Rice Pudding with success. Yummy and Easy and a little different from how I usually make it {rice pudding is an easy snack, dinner, dessert, winter warmer etc in our house}

I've also begun in earnest my scarf obsession. Think I've worn one atleast 4 times this last week. I've been wearing them for weeks now. Love Scarfs. Love that it will be cool enough to wear one all day soon, instead of just when I'm cold riding our bikes to school, or in the shade. I have to take it off too much during the day still when it warms up. I've been experimenting with different tying styles. Wore a regular scarf tied into a circle scarf last night to a birthday party and recieved lots of compliments.  My favourite youtube scarf tutorial - lots of ideas and so good!

Some of my favourites

the fake knot
the european loop

the figure 8
the french knot

I just rewatched that youtube video.
I think it is a must that I try the bunny ears, the magic trick, waterfall, X, keytie, hidden knot!

Enjoy the cooler weather!

{though I think its been quiet hot this week!}... its coming. The cool is coming!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Feeling Blue {the good type}

{not edited in anyway. Randomly chosen from photos taken this past month}

Blue skies.

Blue Blue skies.

I {LOVE} this time of year.

Cool Crisp mornings.

Warm sunny days.

Have barely seen a cloud in about 2 months.

It's delicious isn't it?

I feel pretty lucky to live in a place with such wonderful weather.

In fact it makes me feel bad that I don't attempt to get out in it more.

This past couple weeks I've made a greater effort to take Miss N to the park, to eat icecream by the cliffs, to play badminton after school in the street {what a mothers day present, to sit and read on the deck, laying in the grass, biking everywhere.

Outside is where its at!

Soon I will be cold.

So its good to remember how perfect it is.

Then I will longingly wait till my next favourite time of year. September - November.


You can't always have it in all aspects of life. So its nice to have even in small simple doses.

{I wrote this earlier in the week and now after publishing.. the clouds are a coming! lol}

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mothers Day Duality

The tale of two Mothers Day:

The Snarky Mothers Day:

How can it be Mothers Day when woken up at 6am 
Children begging you to eat breakfast in bed even when it is the worst thing in the world
Forced to eat a cold breadfast that's been repeatedly touched
Copious amounts of handmade cards and presents which you are required to love and admire when perhaps you think they should be destined for the bin.
The 5 fererro rocher flowers you were given at church were eaten by said kids
Chocolates are a must give present only because the children know that they will get some
Begging children to get themselves ready for church, clean up around the place, go to bed early, ----- insert any prefered behaviour ----- as gift to you.
The holiday itself makes you depressed because it is far from the serene, kind, full of willing helpers to do your work while you laze the day away dreaming of just how perfect motherhood is. When in fact the best mothers day would be one where you are no where near your children. We do that mothering thing 365 days a year... how about a No Mothering Day...

The Sentimental Mothers Day:

Little ones climbing into bed early with squeals over making you breakfast in bed
Happy breakfast laid table sitting around it together 
Beautiful handmade cards with heart melting sentiments with ' If I could wish for just one present it would be you' 'You are the best mum in the world' 'My mum is special because she makes me my favourite chocolate and strawberry cake' (this made me laugh because 1- I didnt know they had a favourite cake and 2- I don't think I've ever cooked said cake ever) 
Presents from the heart, funny things they think you've always wanted, some surprising insightful. Handwritten signs welcoming those into our house on mothers day.
Tears shed at church from wonderful talks about motherhood
Afternoon tea shared with family.
Lots of kisses and cuddle

A child composes their own song for you and your heart melts. {to tune of this song }

I want this to be a good mothers day
I really really love you and I just want to say

I would not be here if it wasn’t for you

I really love you to
So I want you to love me as much you do

I don’t care about anything but you

I don’t want anything but love from you

If I had to choose a present it would be nothing

But to see you all the time
I want you to be happy because you’re  very lucky to have me

Please love me, please care for me,  Please care for me A lot because I love you
I want love from you, from me to you

I give you my love from me

Perhaps each Mothers Day is  a little combination of both. Too Snarky is just plain sad {and rude}. Too sentimental can feel so far removed from reality it seems a lie. Some years full on snark, some years full on sentimenal with tears and all. Some Mothers Days are hard, some easy and blissful. An emotional rollercoaster - Just like motherhood really!

As I gather my cards {to be stored in a special file I keep all my cards from my kids}
I see pure love and innocence, kindess and wanting.

The act of me as their mother will be to turn their words into actions.

Low key expectations, some food, and a little family love are keys to a successful Mothers Day in my book. Extra helpful Daddy and Kids makes a day. Don't really expect a day off.
And early bedtime certainly helps too! {please a gift you can give me.. go to bed early!}

and a Mothers Day Photoshoot. A must have.

I must have been a good mumma cause I scored lovely presents of tulips, a whisk, a large serving spoon, a smoothies cookbook, an egg timer, coloured cutting boards, mascara and a badminton set!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012


I think we participated in perhaps our last swim of the season? It's always nice to have a last goodbye to the lingering summer.  I'm unsure of saying that though because when you live in a temperate (sometimes crazy hot) climate you just never know! But the weather is turning chillier... so I'm safe to think it was our last..... I think ....... we shall see.

I went out to this restaurant for my brothers birthday. Haven't had a 'just siblings' date in  a looong time. I moved out of home (got married) when my siblings were all still young and fun. I sometimes feel like I missed growing up as teenagers with them (my youngest brother was only 10 when I left!). It's always fun to get together. I tried really hard not to order the creme brulee. I know that's what I want. But then I think of all those other desserts missing out. I think of how I could be missing another good dessert from my lack of experimentation at restaurants. How it would be great to be adventurous and not boring in menu decisions. But we all know how fail that turns out!?! {why?} The churro's with caramel dipping sauce were good, but after the last two visit of trying not to order creme brulee.. I think it's time I will!

I wore my snazzy earrings. For my birthday my sister got me these lovely expensive earrings. I put them aside for special and promptly forgot about them. We all know how rarely special comes along.... My birthday was in January! Well that was long enough a wait. So the earrings were bought out for the special occasion of wearing my 80's bling sweater to church and teaching the Young womens. Bringing a touch of class to my everyday. Thank you for making me smile dear sister!

We made a last minute trip to the country to stay with and annoy some lovely friends of ours. Love their home, the views, their hospitatlity, the warmth and love that comes from them.  I love when you can visit another family with 5 children and each child has another to play with whom they enjoy being with and are well behaved. Who would have thought there were 9 kids in the house {barring food time ;} Visits like that remind me how I want to be, how I want my family to be, how I want to warmly embrace each individual who visits my home and hope that they feel as welcome as I do at my friends places. It truly is a wonderful feeling to feel welcomed, at home and relaxed in another's space. To me this is one of life's greatest blessings.

The Mr made the best homemade custard on the weekend. All sweet and smooth. So good I ate it cold for breakfast the next day. Two days later I was still thinking about it and decided to try and make some more. His tasted better. But I shall have to wait for him to come back from jail to make some more {He's working in a high and low security prison for a week! yikes}

Love the weekend.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Milk froth and other goings on.

Nothing is happening.   NOTH.ING.

Maybe that's what happens this time of year.

It's a bit of a transition time.

We've had free saturdays for the past month {what the? that never happens!} and have just been kicking back, sitting in our jammies, cleaning the house....

That transition from summer to winter.

Time to tuckle in {our bedtime word. Tuckle in. Tuck and Snuggle}

It rained all weekend and we read books, watched movies and drank milo

For those that are interested I have learnt how to make awesome milk froth. I feel so fancy! I get a half cup of milk and put it in the milkshake maker/wizzer thing. I discovered that Lite Milk froths up like marshmallow in seconds! Regular milk or Trim milk does not work. ONLY Lite Milk. Anyway that little bit of milk turns into a huge cup milky goodness full of air! I then heat the cup in the microwave briefly to warm it.. DO NOT warm the milk first. I will not froth. This then makes enough froth to be scooped over six cups. YUM. I feel like I'm in a restaurant/cafe!

We had our first fire of the season

{They did it without me while I was at a meeting. So I shall blog the next one as if it is the first}

I've been sewing Rice Heat Bags {mmmm I luff them! tutorial here }

{It's not cold yet but we could not live without ours as we don't have a heater. We put them in our beds to warm the sheets, we put them down our shirts, we put them in the bottom of sleeping bags the girls walk around in. They make little cold children EAGER to go to bed :) They are safe and the girls heat up their own as they need. 1-2 mins microwave is perfect, little packets of heaven they are}

We've been riding everyday since someone learnt to ride their bike.

{it keeps me warm! sweating even! with a bike with broken gears I'm pushing hard the whole way. I have such a lazy disposition. I am so grateful for kids who push me to do more}

Quiet afternoons of homework afternoon tea and computer time

{I'm always up and down with this! I know as a kid I loved my easy afternoons of coming home from school and watching a little tv, so I feel bad when I don't want my kids to. I'm learning to relax and let go and realise they have probably played enough at school and might not want to {but I want them to!!!} As we don't do any organised sports or classes I feel I should be schlepping them to parks, doing crafts, biking, running around outside, playing with balls, cricket or something, building cubbies... but getting them to do that.... and then I feel bad ... you didn't do that as a older kid I tell myself..... oh well... we shall have the manic of up and down depending on mum's motivation}

....and that has been my life the past weeks.

Along with lots of warm food making

- minestrone, herb loaf bread, Beef and Barley Stew, Chinese Dumplings, to name a few.
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