Archives for the month of: November, 2012

A long, long time ago there was a young girl with gigantic unruly hair who lived just down the road from a young boy with braces who played hockey. High school sweethearts.

That was 13 years ago. My hair is still unruly, but not so big thanks to advances in hair treatments. Aidan’s braces went a long time ago, but hockey is still hanging around.

We have traveled to Malaysia, Mauritius, Bali and Thailand. We have lived in four different houses together. We are the proud owner of 1 diva cat. We got married and we had a baby. I completed a university degree and Aidan has finished an electrical apprenticeship. We are busy, lazy, annoying, cheeky, stupid, irritating, smart, clever, smiley, giggling, messy, poor (at times), drinkers, eaters, friends, partners and lovers. We are happy.

13 years together, almost 3 years married, almost 1 year with indi, it’s all just a little bit lovely.

Gigantic love up over here right now, sending it all out to you guys

Much love peeps xxx

Advertisements
20121127-185734.jpg

I swear there was some there just a minute ago? It was the best damn shortbread I have ever tasted. And I don’t normally like shortbread.

I found this recipe in my recipe journal, I must have cut it out a million years ago with the intention of making it one day. So glad I found it.

I promise you it was yum. It lasted all of a day, and that’s saying something. I dare you to make it. Do it, now!

the best shortbread recipe ever:
Ingredients

  • butter to grease
  • 250g butter at room temp
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 300g plain flour sifted
  • 90g rice flour sifted

Method

Pre heat oven to 150 degrees. Beat butter and sugar till creamy. Gradually add flours, beating on low speed until almost combined (I dumped it all in at the same time-still tasted good). In the bowl, use hands to bind the ingredients. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough (it will be slightly crumbly, thats a good thing). Pack into a small biscuit tray (I used a spatula to smoosh that little bit more). Score into the desired size pieces (I cut instead of score which made getting them out much easier). Bake for 45mins -1hr.

It was sooooooooooo good. I had shortbread with cold milk last night and felt myself wanting to do a crossword puzzle and found myself dreaming about slippers. Such a lovely feeling. Now I must go and run 5 km to burn it off. There should be warnings on baked goods.

Much love peeps xxx

Once again pinterest is giving me ideas. Today, its personalised mugs.

This pin is where I got the idea (just to make it abundantly clear, no way in hell am I smart enough to come up with this awesome idea :))

DIY Sharpie mugs from The Sweetest Occasion

Original source here

I picked up some $1.00 mugs from kmart and a sharpie from coles for $3.49. Bargain Mate.

All you have to do is draw a design on your mug then bake in oven at 180 for 30 minutes to set. Boom! Cheap, fast, DIY, frugal christmas pressy.

I’m way impressed with this awesome idea. Warning if you are friend or family the above may be your cup (but more than likely, due to my love of cake, I’ll end up keeping this one).

Much love peeps xxx

Its no secret, me and pinterest are in pretty heavy. We spend way too much time together and I’m starting to think that perhaps pinterest is a bad influence on me. It keeps making me do all sorts of things I would never have thought of doing.

Exhibit A: Salt Dough Ornaments.

A few of the sweet pieces we made at home

Original recipe source here

I pinned this a while back, but saw some awesome people attempting them via instagram. Peer pressure, yeah probably. Determined, I set out to crack another pinterest craft project.

As you can see they look gorgeous. I still want to paint them and add ribbon but even as they are they are super gorgeous.

SALT DOUGH RECIPE

  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1/2 cup warm water

Mix ingredients together (fine glitter added looks pretty too). Dust work space with a small amount of flour. Roll out to desired thickness (too thin may cause bubbling-too thick may require longer to cook). Cut/decorate your shapes. We used thyme sprigs, random leaves found in the garden, some lace and fridge magnet letters. Stamps work really well too if you can find some sweet ones. Don’t forget to make a hole for adding ribbon when the piece is finished (rub lightly with flour before baking for a more distinct white color). Place on a tray and place in preheated oven at 120 degrees for 2 hours. I found that if you turn the ornaments over 2o mins before they are done then the underside goes the same color.

Once they have finished baking let them cool, then if desired -decorate. A fabulous home made touch to your christmas tree. (Side note, I’m banned from putting up trees or decorating until December first, my poor little baked pretties are going to be so sad until then).

This was so much fun, even Aidan joined in. Going to add this to my ever growing list of Christmas traditions.

Much love peeps xxx

20121126-214009.jpg

20121126-214026.jpg

20121126-214040.jpg

20121126-214826.jpg

20121126-214838.jpg

20121126-214852.jpg

20121126-214902.jpg

20121126-214918.jpg

20121126-214929.jpg

20121126-214946.jpg

20121126-214955.jpg

20121126-215009.jpg

20121126-215020.jpg

20121126-215030.jpg

20121126-215046.jpg

20121126-215056.jpg

20121126-215109.jpg

Today there is flour all over my kitchen. My poo brown rented kitchen bench had crazy dandruff. There is little clouds of white across my ugly beige lino. My house smells all sorts of crazy beautiful, you know, the awesome baking smell that simultaneously turns you on but also makes you want to roll around in sugar and butter at the same time? What? That doesn’t happen to you? My bad.

Round one of my Christmas baking has begun. The ‘test’ round. Pretty much an excuse to make Xmas yummies to gorge on, whilst claiming that you needed to test the recipe before giving the treats as gifts. And baking them in November also means they won’t keep till Christmas so you just have to eat them. Bugger.

Today we baked some salt dough decorations (not edible), shortbread and sugar and spice biscuits (will share the recipes later this week).

My waistline is not going to be happy come Christmas time. My husband however, is wearing a gigantic smile thanks to a giant pile of yummies on the counter top. If your near by my house please drop in and help yourself to the baked goods because I could possibly eat everything myself if given half a chance.

Clearly I’m going to have to increase the gym time to balance it all out.

Much love peeps xxx

 

I sometimes go overboard on my gift giving. By sometimes I mean always. I love buying presents for all the people I love, and even some of the people I don’t love so much. I just love picking a fabulous present, going overboard on the wrapping and then forcing them to open in front of me so that I can see their reaction. Perhaps I’ve lost the real ‘Christmas spirit’ but its these things that make Christmas special to me.

This year we have a baby, and we are saving for a house. So crazy Cassie and her Christmas spending need to be boxed away for future Christmas’s to come, and the new smart thinking, money savvy Cassie is replacing her for a while (just FYI money savvy is a new feature, there is still a few kinks on that one).

After a year of attempting crafting projects with a success rate that is relatively higher than the failure rate, I have decided to try a ‘do it yourself’ approach to gift giving. While you might be impressed at my statement, I promise you its not all roses and lollipops. Its quite the opposite.

If you can imagine a craft room, with shelves of bits and bobs spread about, a sewing machine surrounded by bright fabrics, and a bench top with assorted glues and ribbons, then there is no way your anywhere near what I’m working with. So far I have attempted working on the dining table (next to indi’s food spread everywhere), on the kitchen bench (near shopping and mail and fruit bowls and dishes), in the sun room on an outdoor couch (coated in cat hair), on the bricks in the back courtyard (with every single ant in Perth at the time) and on the lounge room floor (in order to watch tv as I was working). The whole DIY thing for presents is fine if its just one or two things that you need to make, but I may or may not have about 8 craft projects on the go. I intend to craft some frugal Christmas spirit for each one of my presents this year. It.is.killing.me.

A normal present, you chose it, you buy it, you wrap it, you give it. Dumb arse here hasn’t chosen craft projects that are simple – no that would be too easy. It took me about two weeks to chase around to all the right stores to find all the bits and bobs I needed to even start. Stupid? Yep, I’m certainly don’t have the smarts on this one.

I will show off all my hard work once the gifts have been received. I’m actually a little proud of what we’ve been doing. Most of them have been inspired by Pinterest. If I hadn’t found that incredibly addictive website I’m pretty sure I’d have brought all my presents online, they would be wrapped by now and all my spare time would be spent watching tv and drinking wine. Unfortunately that is not the case. Its ok wine, I miss you too.

If your doing a ‘DIY’ Christmas I am sending you lots of love and calming crafty vibes.

Much love peeps xxx

 

 

It came at me like a roller coaster but it only felt like a whisper.

One year with out my dad. One year of not having the man who taught me about the ocean, the reason I love Jackson Browne, where I got my curls from, where my sense of humour came from, why I nickname everyone, the reason I know lord of the rings so well, the person I ask about gardening. One year with out him.

I woke early on Tuesday, like the wind had slapped me. I literally woke coughing. The sun was creeping in and I could feel the tears weighing behind my eyes. Indi woke early too, only minutes later. Which (luckily for me) is unusual. Not being at home, I went in and picked her up. She snuggled in straight away. As I brought her back to bed, Aidan woke too. Despite the heavy feeling with in, I was surrounded by love exactly when I needed it. The heavy moved back into the shadows.

It wasn’t a day for tears, for that I am thankful. It wasn’t a day for dredging up dark wet piles of grief either. It was just a day. A day that made us think fondly of a man who was our world. So I did. I smiled and loved, I lived and I was still in my moment. I was still enough to absorb the memories, to cherish what I once had.

I was determined to take dads paddle board out. The weather was looking pretty crappy though, and it Aidan was trying to convince me otherwise. Quoting disgraceful 90’s songs I told him ‘Aint nothing gonna break my stride’ I was going paddle boarding. It was happening.

My dad always said that you can always find a beach that fits the purpose, you just gotta look. He was a surfer who knew more about swell and tides and waves and wind than anyone I know (although I don’t know any weather men personally, I’m told my dad was a bit if a whiz at this stuff). True to his word, Albany handed me that beach on a silver platter.

Aidan carried the board down to the beach (have you seen the size if a paddle board? They are huge. I can’t even reach the top of the car to touch the board let alone get it down). I was totally prepared to fall off and make a giant idiot of myself. A few of the other people on the beach must have thought so too because they decided to call out a few non encouraging words. Just to make them feel bad, I didn’t fall off. And had I not been focusing hard on balancing I would have yelled back some if their not so nice things and pulled fingers as I did it. Up your bum old bitter beach goers, I totally got this shit!

Indi crawled into the water, fully clothed. Not really what we were prepared for. She also climbed up on to the board and then proceeded to dive in to the water head first off the board. All this was unassisted mind you. The kid is part mermaid. She loved the water, crawling and splashing about. Not too impressed with her salt rash though, but easily pleased once more by sitting under the tap as I washed the sand off my feet.

I feel whole again after taking the board out. Feel like I spent time with my dad. It was nice to do something that we would have done together, had he been here. Comforting almost.

So the day didn’t suck. It was nice, good, normal even. Which in itself feels weird and brings a wave of guilt. But for now that is enough. Just enough so I can hang up my big winter grief coat until I need it next.

Thank you for your kind thoughts, all received with a grateful heart.

Much love peeps xxx

My brain is super busy these days. I must admit it works a whole lot harder than the rest of my body combined, I’m lazy. It’s full of ideas, and memories, lists of things to do and things that should already be done. It’s like a traffic jam up there, so much happening nothing really making any moves.

My to do lists are crazy long. It’s this time of year, I just keep adding to my lists rather than crossing anything off. I’m trying to multi task to achieve things, but it’s no use I am constantly behind.

It’s horrible feeling like you need to catch up. Reminds me of being extremely slow at cross country during high school. Knowing everyone else had pretty much finished, and there I was plodding along. It felt like I was never going to finish. But I eventually did, and thankfully cross country was only once a year.

Catching up is a priority, I know that. But my ability to procrastinate is kicking in big time. I blame tv programmers. They keep putting Disney shows/movies on, everyone knows I’m a sucker for that crap. Then there’s tiny human, who is growing up so crazy fast in front of me. I feel like if I don’t stop and steal a moment with her, ill turn around and she will be 13, telling me she hates me and threatening to run away. On top of that, the inner Christmas elf in me is pinging out on dreams of tinsel and decorating, cookies and parties. But none of these things even closely relate to grocery shopping, merging super or cleaning the bathroom.

So how do I gets self sorted? Who knows?! Probably not by hanging out with my gorgeous friends and watching movies or checking Facebook a million times or even by deciding to have a nap when the baby sleeps (she sleeps all the way through, compared to ‘real’ mums I’m practically off my face on sleep most nights).

So my plan is to make a plan (also known as more procrastination). I’m going to plan out when I want to get all my ‘to do’ list done. As well as that I’m going to make a chore schedule (OCD much crazy lady?). I’d clean everything everyday given half a chance. And lately I am telepathically kicking my own arse for not getting even the simplest things done. At least if there is a schedule I can be realistic.

The biggest problem with all this is that I’m in part a perfectionist. Well sort of anyway. It’s more that I must think that I’m the only one who will do it the right way or do it properly so I put pressure on myself to get it done and done right. I hate asking for help, and have real issues when people offer help (nope, don’t do it, do not offer me help. I need to try to figure it out myself, go through all the motions. Then when I need help I will ask for it, but only then can you give it. Yep I know, utter loon over here).

So you can see I am my own rock and hard place. Whole lot of crazies in this bag. I aim to sort through all my crazies one day. But I can’t keep procrastinating right now, I’ve got a ‘to do’ list to conquer. Why are you distracting me?

Much love peeps xxx

This little face is looking more and more like her poppy. Each day there are things she does that reminds me so much of him.

It has been almost a year with out him. My god that stings. While everything inside of me want to curl up and hide from the world next tuesday, I know that reality is warming up its hand to bitch slap me.

The fact that dads not here is like a splinter that is stuck under my skin. You can’t see it, but you know it’s there. You can feel it, not all the time, but the pain hits you when you least expect it. The worst thing is you can’t fix it.

I’m use to it now. That soft ache is somewhat comforting in a completely weird kind of way. It means I haven’t forgotten. And I don’t want to forget.

So I’m preparing for a flying visit to Albany for the anniversary. That black hole feeling is there waiting for me to wear it like a winter coat. I’m ready. Regardless of the fact that he’s not here I’d still do anything for my dad. If that means throwing myself back into the grief cave for a day or two to commemorate him, then so be it.

Sending crazy courage vibes to you all, much love peeps xxx

%d bloggers like this: