Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The big birthday

Wow, Jakob is now 10. On Saturday he had his party with some friends from his old school and some friends from his new school.

To start the day we had a healthy lunch. Tomato and cucumber from the garden with cheese from Evansdale and smoked salmon from the North Canterbury Seafood Market, finished with grapes from the vine.

The new decor at Laser Strike
Then onto the junk. No 10 year old boy wants to have healthy food for their party. (We did have them on that the cucumber was the birthday cake, put candles in it etc. But Jakob deleted the photo on his new camera before I could get to it.)
Through the portal and into battle

boys getting kitted up and ready to go

Anyway - Laser strike - was a huge hit!! It had only just reopened since the Feb 2011 quake and all the boys said they wanted their next party to be there. I even played the second game.

Lasers ON
The party afterward

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

My day in changes of clothes

The magazine subscription that I have this year is for a new UK magazine called "The Simple Things". One of the regular columns is called - My day in cups of tea. Well lately I have been thinking of my day in changes of clothes.

I wear different outfits during the day depending on what role I am doing at that time. Sometimes I used to get stuck in my work clothes for the whole day as it seemed easier. But that made me feel like I was always at work.

I am also trying to look more presentable if I am out and about with the boys. People constantly think that I am the boys Nana, so I consciously try not to wear frumpy stuff just because it is comfy. Or to jazz things up with jewelry or a scarf.

1. Kids off to school - I am going to line trim the edges of the lawn and do some digging of paths

2. 10.30am Dressed for work as off to a H&S meeting at the Kaiapoi  EQR hub

3. Time to get Jakob for dentist appointment at 2.30pm

4. Now the cooking mum. Getting dinner prepared and icing birthday cakes. The apron is an old man's shirt I have blogged about

4. 8.45pm In my nighty (another upcyle from a frumpy longsleeved thing). I am having a tired day. They happen every so often  now my heart is deteriorating. I want to sew and garden but Aaron is out, the kids tucked in, so I am off to bed to read and sleep.
So ma day today (and I think it was one of the lesser changes of clothes).
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Lego Birthday Cake

Well Jakob is 10 tomorrow! I decided to try some of the icing skills that I learnt at a course at the Make Cafe. It has been a little bit of a juggle as the lady who took the course gave us lots of information, but it was all verbal. I still don't know where to get half the icing, powder etc that she talked about. But loved making it all.

So what I have done is used a bit of what she taught, used things that my Mother-in-law and shown me to do and sort of mixed it up.

The result is a Lego cake. I made one cake batch and put it into my mini loaf tins. Then iced each individually to look like separate Lego pieces. It seems to have worked OK  This was a trial run as I will make more for his party on the weekend.

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Friday, February 15, 2013

Courgette fritter stack

My sister -in- law started a blog. All about being dairy free. Her daughter is allergic to milk protein. Anyway in the constant drive to get more veges into us and to use the huge volume of courgette (zuchini)  from the garden, I made her Courgette fritters last night. YUM

We had it with potatoes, green beans, broccoli - all from the garden and a little bit of chicken in between the fritters.

Definitely will make again.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

It's a secret - What I am working on

The start of the skirt
The builders in. Newly painted walls.
Well I have not been able to show what I am working on. Two reasons - 1. I am not working on anything much in the craft world. It is all about a rampaging garden that needs controlling and planting for winter and a big paint job. 2. What I am working on has to be secret.

No 1.  Yes I am trying to upcycle a skirt from an old set of jeans and various men's shirts. Not sure if it will look ok on me, not sure if I have gathered the material enough. etc etc.. all those doubts creeping in but it does not stop me from freehanding (ie not using a pattern).

Also we have just had to paint the lounge. Thankfully the job was super quick. I got a call yesterday to say the builders will be in to do the new skirting boards. OOPPPS my procrastination is evident - I had not yet gotten around to painting the lounge in preparation. So yesterday I sanded, puttied, cleaned and the painted. My gorgeous husband came home from work and did the grunt work on the painting - he rolled the walls, I just did the fiddly cutting in. With his help it was all done in a day (and I washed the curtains that I took down!!!) (not to mention I made dinner for a friend who is moving today and tomorrow - very plain. Meatballs, rice and some chocolate brownie for dessert.)

A sneak peak at the pouch before posting
No 2. I am giving you a sneak peak. But for the first time ever I am involved in a mystery swap with someone in the blogging / crafting world. This swap is organised by Ros from Sew Delicious and is all about sewing a pouch and stuffing it with your favourite chocolate. It has to be sent by 14th Feb. So mine is winging it's way over to Julia at Blue Jay Cottage. She is not blogging much at the moment as she has a new baby - so definitely needs chocolate!! I don't know who has me yet..... watch this space.

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Monday, February 11, 2013

An accidental breakfast

We had a very very hot weekend camping at Balmoral Forrest. Whew this summer is long and hot. It was not only hot outside the caravan but inside!

On Saturday morning I was cooking brunch for everyone (American pancakes with maple syrup) and I cooked more than the pancakes. I was leaning against the stove opening the window to the kitchen area and I saw a bit of smoke. Nope the pancakes were not burning. Then I looked down and thought - my top is smoking!! The time it took me to register that, my top was flaming - literally!!

I must have sqwarked pretty loudly as Aaron came running over saying "what's wrong". But man I was quick. I had that top off and thrown out onto the grass before he could even get near me.

Morris had a great time
The photo shows a really large part burnt but in actual fact a lot of that happened outside before everyone stomped and threw water on it. I was more worried that with the extreme fire danger at the moment that I would set the camping area on fire.

Being a cotton top the flames just went up the material and not on me. I did not even feel any warmth or anything. No marks or red. Just imagine if it had been polyester.

Sigh. Sadly that had been my favourite top all this summer.

The boys spent heaps of time together being pals.
Apart from that we just swam and sat in the shade and swam some more. Bliss.

The gorgeous swimming hole

Monday, February 4, 2013

Things that caught my eye

On my trip home from Dunedin and my uncles funeral I took the long way to everywhere. All the old places I used to go to, basically I went down memory lane. So many of the off the road small towns are run down and shops empty. It was sad to see. Other things, like the gorgeous floral baskets that adorn all the shop frontages in Oamaru, were amazing.

I woke in the morning in Dunedin and from the door where I was sleeping this was my view - misty morning. What the mist did was accentuate the colours of the flowers.
View from the door

the flowers looked like they were glowing
Then on my travels around Warrington, Seacliff and Karitane I spotted lots of old signs. I had read about a man doing photos of these kinds of signs, calling them ghost signs, as he said they were part of our history that tells quite a social tale and will soon be lost. 

Then on to Oamaru where I am always so taken by the hanging baskets. What a progressive city council to organise this. It really beautifies the town.

 A stop at Riverstone Kitchen where I wandered through the most amazing garden. Broccoli the size of my handbag, oh I was so envious. I need a big garden too!!! I could not partake of anything there as they were getting ready for dinner service. But I wandered the amazing vege garden for about 30 minutes. Unfortunately a lot of my photos there went weird so I can't show you the magnificence of the place.

The last place that amazed me for the change that has occured was at Hands Ashford in Asburton. One of the staff has bought the shop out and the shop and cafe have been modernised, re equiped and was amazing.
I bought a hank of baby alpaca wool to make a scarf. It is superfine, spun at lace weight. So should be gorgeous.

A gorgeous break in Rarotonga

Woo hoo, A holiday with no kids for 11 days. Bliss, relaxing and warm! BTW it was an early 20th wedding anniversary present to ourselves....