Thursday, December 27, 2012

Pop the cork!

Yesterday morning we received a text message from our second son Daniel, asking if we were able to go out to their house and help them with something. This wasn't an unusual request as we do that quite often.

So when we got out there Daniel was doing some paving, and after chatting for a while, I said, "well what do you want us to do?". He said "Nothing, we just wanted to let you know that we got engaged this morning!". We were delighted, so there were hugs all round, and tears of joy!!

Telesha's family had also had a message and arrived soon after!!

We ended up out at their place for tea, testing out their new pizza oven and having a few celebratory drinks.

They don't have any plans at this stage for when and where they will be getting married, but I'm sure that will all start to fall into place as time goes along.

Very excited :)

Monday, December 24, 2012

Fun in the kitchen!

We had some friends around for drinks yesterday arvo, so I enjoyed putting some nibbling platters together.

The fruit cheese going down the middle of the above photos is really simple to make and delicious. I find the supermarket fruit cheeses a bit plasticy. The one above is Apricot and Almond and all you do is buy a block of Phildelphia Cream Cheese, allow to soften and then mix in dried diced apricots (Australian ones!) and diced or flaked almonds. Roll into a log and wrap in alfoil, then place in fridge. When ready to use, just slice into discs. They last in the fridge for quite a while. I usually do 2 logs.

I also made some Spicy Meatballs and served with a toothpick and some sweet chilli sauce for dipping. They were baked not much easier and better for you.
The recipe was:
500g chicken mince
½ cup sweet chilli sauce
¼ cup coriander
½ cup coconut
1 cup breadcrumbs
Mix together, roll into balls and place on lined baking tray and bake in a moderate over for around 10-15 mins.

This is not my photo...I forgot to take one once I'd cooked them but they looked like this!

I hope you are enjoying getting into the spirit of Christmas too.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Aahh a few days off!

It's's that time of the year when even though there is work to do, people close their offices and take time off, and that's just what I'm doing as of this afternoon...yay!

I've just baked some Almond Crescent Cookes. I hadn't tried the recipe before but they taste quite nice.  I got the recipe from here. I gave up on turning them into crescents and instead rolled them into logs and sliced them into discs. I don't have much patience for moulding into shapes!! Some of these will get packaged into cello bags for small gifts.

I also made a version of the Chocolate Ripple Cake this afternoon as we have a Christmas breakup tomorrow and we were asked to bring a dessert. I layered Milk Coffee biscuits and Chocolate Ripple biscuits between whipped cream in which I had added some vanilla essence, icing sugar and some dissolved coffee. It will sit in the fridge overnight and by tomorrow lunchtime it will be a delicious, soft, cake-like texture. Always a favourite.

The letters we have received in the mail over the past couple of weeks have been an interesting mix of Christmas and Sympathy cards, due to my Dad's passing.I received some beautiful flowers too from an association I'm involved with. Simple reminders that we have lots of lovely friends.

I'm sure I won't get around to another post before Christmas, so I wish all my blog friends a happy Christmas and hope you can spend it with those you love.

This is my holiday workout plan!!!  Hope you enjoy my humour!!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

It's been a while!

The past couple of months has been a real juggling act with my time. With Dad deteriorating daily, there have been many trips to Adelaide to be with him and support Mum.

Sadly, Dad passed away on the 6th Dec, and we had a lovely private funeral with immediate family on Tuesday morning, and then a 'Celebration of his life' service for the public in the afternoon.

We can be thankful that Dad had a very long, happy, healthy and fulfilling life and it was only in the past months due to the brain tumor that his quality of life wained.

In Dad's words..."I've had a good innings"!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Want to come to our garage sale?

Next Saturday morning we will be holding our own garage sale, so this weekend we needed to start getting things together and sorting out what we no longer require.

I have 'many, many' piles of magazines, maily home living type ones. I don't like parting with them but there comes a time when I need to cull to make room for new ones!
Just the start of me sorting through my piles of magazines...more will be done today.
 A few drawers were cluttered with things I used to have displayed around the house. My more minimilistic style these days and move away from the 'country' look will see these things up for sale.
 This box is full of clothes and shoes from my wardrobe cleanout the other week. There will be more clothes coming too from Telesha who also had a wardrobe cleanout before they moved into their new home.
Hubby started going through things down our back room yesterday. These are his magazines up for grabs...PC and car related ones. I'm sure we'll find lots of other things in that room to add to the sale.
Over the past few weeks the boys have been putting stuff in our shed for the sale. This will be added too today as well. 

Let's hope for a nice sunny morning. What we don't sell will go to our local Opp shops.

I work from our home office, and during the week I could hear noises coming from the bathroom. I wandered in looked up at our heat lights and could see through the gap around the globe a bird was fluttering around. I closed the door as I couldn't see how I could do anything to help it out. I texted hubby and he rang me. As I was talking to him on the phone I opened the bathroom door to to find the bird had found it's way out and was flying around!! After about 5 minutes I finally got him captured in an ice cream container and let him free outside!!
Did you notice we haven't painted our bathroom walls yet? That's the last job we have to do to finish the makeover. Once we get that done, I'll load up all the before and after pics.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012 inheritance!

With Mum and Dad moving into Resthaven, it has meant that their unit in the Retirement Village needed to be cleaned out. Not an easy task when we are all scattered around SA!
However,the task is nearly done and precious items have been distributed to family or kept in storage to deal with later.

One item that I've always loved was 'Lucy'. A lovely statue of a young girl reading a book.

I'm not sure how old 'Lucy' is but she used to sit in my Nana's passage and in her hey day was a glossy, browny/grey colour. When Nana died, about 42 years ago, my Mum took her. In previous years she has lived outside in my Mum's garden, so has wethered. As you can see she is a bit worse for ware, but I quite like the distressed, shabby look! She now sits on one of my bookshelves in our family room and is a lovely keepsake of times past.

I love this time of the year when my garden comes alive with lush green growth on our trees and the roses start to flower.

As you can see above my Pierre de Ronsard is making it's way up the lattice. I have 3 planted side by side. To my surprise though this morning, I noticed that one of them has produced a 'red' flower....quite odd....I'll be interested to see the colours of the buds on that same plant.
When visiting Mum and Dad the other week, one of my sisters snapped a shot of me with Dad.

Above: Dad and me sitting in their communal lounge at Resthaven

Well it's time for my breakfast...This is what I have every morning....delicious Vanilla Bean yoghurt, with strawberries and raw nuts....yum!

 Hope you enjoy your day.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

From my camera!

Life is starting to get back to some sort of 'normality'. Mum and Dad are now settled into their new 'low care' facility at Resthaven Paradise. It is a lovely complex with very caring and helpful staff. They have 2 rooms which are almost opposite each other, but we have been able to set one up as their bedroom and the other as their lounge room, so they have their own private space away from the communial lounge to enjoy a cuppa with friends and family.

As you would be aware due to many trips down to Adelaide to be with M&D over the past couple of months, my blogging has taken a back seat, so I'll just show a few photos of what I managed to take along the way!

One of the great things about heading to Adelaide regularly has been catching up with my sisters more...I usually stay with Bronny (above) when we're down.
We enjoyed a delicious Pizza at her local Italian Restaurant...yum!

Exciting Times....Our youngest son Daniel and partner Telesha, move into their new house this weekend...we've really enjoyed watching it all come together.
Now they have the fun part of making it their home.
 Managed to have a wardrobe many shoes can one girl have!!

Not sure if this is genius or I'm just behind the times with shoe organisation, but a rubber band around the pairs of shoes has made my life so much easier in finding and keeping my motley collection together.
A box ready to go to the Opp Shop.

This was a recipe from Better Homes and Gardens, a Croissant and Hazelnut Pudding...delicious!  Just cut croissants in half and smother with Nutella, place in a baking dish and cover with custard (I used the bought custard)...bake. This tastes amazing and soooo easy. I'd never tried nutella as I thought it would have been too rich but I keep a jar in my cupboard now!

 Isn't this wedding cake lovely...I pinned it from Pinterest.

Hopefully I'll get back into more regular posts from now on and will start visiting your blogs again. Enjoy your weekend.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Recipe Holder

As you would have guessed, blogging has taken a back seat at the moment, due to my Dad's illness. We still haven't got M&D into a care facility yet, (but it's getting closer), so they have been staying with one of my sisters and our family has been their carers, making sure they have someone with them every day, taking them on outings or having visitors over and just being there for them. We are fortunate there are 6 of us girls and partners, so we are all juggling the caring, work, family life etc.
It has been a lovely time though, of having quality time with M&D and catching up with aunty's, uncles and their friends.

I thought I would share with you though this picture that came through on email yesterday as it's a classic and so practical. A recipe holder!  Why didn't I think of that!

When I was down in Adelaide the other week I took M&D out to Newman's Nursery at Tea Tree Gully for lunch. It was a lovely sunny day and after lunch we wandered around the nursery. It's so picturesque. The photo below shows their amazing magnolia trees, and Mum was beatifully colour coded amongst them!!

I didn't catch Dad with a smile, but he did enjoy the outing :)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

My Dad :(

My blogging has taken a back seat of late, as my Dad got diagnosed a few weeks back with a brain tumor, along with a kidney and lung tumors. Dad is 87 and has had a very healthy, fulfilling life, with lots of friends and family that love him dearly.

The tumor is a primary one and very aggressive and not treatable, so we probably only have a very limited time left with him. He, however is in very good spirits and unbelievably isn't in any pain as yet. He is still quite alert, but is starting to get very confused with things and his memory isn't good. He has been told to expect the right side of his body to become quite weak.

Up until his diagnosis, Mum and Dad were independently living in a Retirement Village with Dad being Mum's carer as Mum has mild Alzheimers, but our family is now caring for them and going through the process of getting them into assisted care etc. His drivers licence has also been taken from him now after 70 odd years of incident free driving!

 The above photo was taken at my party back in early July. It is Mum and Dad with some of their family.

It has been an emotionally sad time, but we have all spent quite a lot of time with them lately, taking them to visit some of their family and friends etc and just being there for them.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

A new blogger and bits and pieces!

Some of you may be familiar with Jo from Vintage Lane Stitches, who is one of my best friends and a creative person. One of her daughters Hannah has joined her on the blog and is posting some of the items she is making. Hannah is a very talented and creative person too, who loves stitching and sewing. Please go and visit their blog and welcome Hannah into blogland.

Above: These are the backpacks Jo and Hannah from
Vintage Lane Stitches made for the Sydney Quilt  and Craft Fair

I wasn't sure what to blog about, so looked on my camera to see what I had taken over the past couple of weeks. Below is our 2 beautiful 'grand dogs' who belong to our sons. 'Cooper' is the chocolate brown one and 'Marshall' is the black one. They come visiting and stay over quite often. They are beautiful dogs and in the picture they are sitting waiting for a special treat. The white board in the background is their shelter with their bed in it where they sleep if they stay over.

We have had a new coffee shop open within one of our beautiful homewares shop 'LaVilla' in Loxton. I had a coffee there with a friend last Saturday morning and it was lovely. Lots of yummy sweet treats to go with coffee as well as light lunches are available.

Have you ever cooked beetroot? I have always bought the tinned variety and had it cold with salad, but I decided to give cooking them a go. I just peeled and roasted them. You are meant to wear gloves when peeling so your fingers don't go red. I didn't and my fingers did go red but they washed off easily enough. They tasted just like warm beetroot...surprise, surprise!!  Not sure if I liked it enough to do it regularly but at least I've tried it.

One of our sons Daniel and his partner are in the process of building. Here is a shot taken a few weeks back. It has been rendered since then and it is now at lockup stage, but I haven't got photos of that yet. As he is a qualified cabinetmaker he is doing all the cabinetry himself.
It's amazing now a days with technology how fast things can develop online. You will recall the epic arrival of London's Mayor Boris Johnson via a zip wire to an olympic event. People have been creative with the photo of him dangling...take a look at the website dedicated to it   Quite amusing!

That's about all from me, hope you enjoy your weekend.


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