Thursday, 12 February 2015

One of Those Days ......

Yesterday was one of those days.....the ones were nothing seems to be going right... one of the light sussex has gone broody again just 14 weeks after the last lot of chicks....  a few of the said chicks flew over the coop fence into the yard... they got into the greenhouse and ate all of my seedlings....and destroyed the strawberry bed...... one of the old girls doesn't look too well and she has been laying soft shelled eggs which keep breaking.... A zucchini bush has developed mildew on the leaves....  . the tap on the water filter started leaking and dripping all over the place... argued with the guy I work for.....this was all before breakfast......then while I was having breakfast  I saw this little worried face watching  me.... somehow your pets know when your not happy....made me realise none of the things going on were insurmountable....just annoying.

The beautiful Daisy........she was worried....doesn't normally put her head on the table.
Broody hen is now in the broody buster ( my husband's trailer).... today I will clip the wings on the teenagers...separate the sick chicken to see what's going on with her....pull out the mildewy zucchini plant ... salvage any seedlings from the mess and save what I can... and get the water filter repaired..... then off to writing group.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Loving the Little Things......

Spent a lovely Sunday morning at Burnham Beeches in Kallista with my daughter &'s a great spot and amazingly popular...we had brunch at the Piggery Cafe  then a walk through the Alfred Nicholas Gardens...
The very impressive Burnham Beeches....a lovely spot to have brunch ... organic local and sustainable foods.. very rustic

 Brunch was smashed avocado with poached eggs and bacon on artisan toast....I love avocado but there was more than I could get through on that plate..... the atmosphere in the café is fantastic.

Brunch is different things to different age groups.....Gboy ordered almond pancakes with pear and banana... unfortunately he wasn't all that keen when it arrived...I ate some of it and he polished off my bacon....... He then ordered a cookie which was nearly as big as his beautiful little face !

An impromptu snap of us walking out of the gardens.
 Our walk through the gardens took us past the old mansion which is going to be restored to a boutique hotel... the lake had been emptied as they are completing restoration work there.... it's an amazing property and to think that the Nicholas family used it as a holiday house....

Monday is my day to mind the little guy..... we started Monday with his swimming lessons and then off to do some lunch and shopping with his Auntie Moo Moo  (my other daughter)  ... Monday also included a long overdue haircut......

He loves his swimming lessons..

He looks so grown up with his haircut....he will be four next month....where did those years go ??

Monday, 9 February 2015

It Was All About the Nuts....

The February Sunday luncheon with the same group of friends transpired into the Saturday night Soiree which had a theme of "we are all going nuts!".. nuts to be in every course.  As usual everything was delicious, food and wine flowed and between the 8 of us we managed to polish it all off.

Almost too pretty to eat...
 Robbie and the Big K had entrée and we began with a delicious starter of Chicken and Cashew patties with a Thai dipping sauce.
Scrumptious dukkha and nut crusted lamb
 J & A our host's prepared a stack of nut and "homemade dukkha" crusted lamb cutlets .... they were so tasty ... served with a side of boiled potates with pine nuts and a lovely creamy aioli ....I was asked to bring a side dish and provided a beetroot and cashew cheese was from Wellbeing magazine so was a very healthy option but could possibly have benefited from a delicious goats cheese or feta as the cashew cheese was a little bland I thought..
Yummy potatoes and pine nuts with a tangy dressing.

My baby beetroot salad with cashew cheese, walnuts, cranberries with a red wine vinegar and oil dressing

It goes without saying that this was ......decadent and delicious.
Janine and Michael were bringing up the rear with dessert...... wow it was delicious...hazelnut merengue base with a chocolate ganache layer, filled with cream, strawberries and another merengue layer, topped with more cream, strawberries and encircled with nutty Ferrero rocher chocolates....scrumptious.
March should see us back at the home of  Robbie and the Big K....always something to look forward to.

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Monthly Link Up for January 2015.....

Joining in with Linda to start off the new year.  I missed December...way too much happening and I didn't get the time (sad face).... but it's a great way to share what has been going on and also good to look back on.

Nourish:  I've spent a bit of time in the kitchen trying to make nourishing but cost effective meals.  I have decided 2015 is the year to try and save money.....I made a lovely cheap and cheerful chicken pie which I posted here.  Used some unhappy bananas and made a de3licious banana and raspberry bread and made a healthy slice using up some dried apricots that had been hanging around in the pantry for ages. 

Prepare:  The zucchinis in the garden have been prolific once I made zucchini relish and loads of zucchini soup which is in the freezer....still having to give lots away though, I didn't have success cutting them up ,then blanching and freezing them last year...they were very soggy and flavourless...don't know if anyone else has any ideas on preserving them.

My zucchini relish with homemade labels and into the pantry...
 Reduce:  Still trying to reduce the amount of plastic we use....I don't want plastic bags at the supermarket even though the shop girls don't appear to want to put meat into anything but plastic and I have to ask them not to use the plastic recent trip to the butcher caused raised eyebrows when I asked them not to use a plastic bag as I had my own bag.  I have no problem with putting wrapped meat into non plastic bags.

I love my hessian shopping bags...I have several that I always use...they last for ages
Green: I have been busy turning the compost and hopefully will have some suitable for the garden beds soon....also the worm wee has been great.  I have also bought the ingredients to make the washing powder from  Here.  Will see how that goes.
Grow:  The garden has been growing well but not as good as last year...maybe it's the crazy weather we are having now....40c one day and the 18c the next...I don't think the poor vegies know what's going on.  The corn grew quite a few ears but they didn't quite develop inside to the about an inch on most of them has no idea why this happened.

The corn is edible but funny looking
Quite a few tomatoes on the plants...but not as many as last year...still enough though

Zucchinis are everywhere.....they grow so fast if you miss one within a couple of days they are like huge gourds

 The pumpkin vines went crazy but quite a few of the baby pumpkins didn't develop... just turned yellow and dropped off...I think they may not have been fertilised even though I did have a bit of a dab at them with the stamen from the female plant.
Pumpkins are also a bit tricky this year....there's quite a few there but a lot didn't fertilise
Create:  I've been pretty busy this month with my elderly parents unwell,  so creativity was a bit out the window...didn't quite finish the block of the month on the quilt I am working on...only two blocks of the month so far and I think I have had this for about 10 months...need to lift my game...

Still not finished this block......only managed the 2 blocks so far

This is an old photo of 1st's finished now....
I have also planted a couple of pots in the greenhouse with Basil...I am planning on using the terracotta pots with Basil plants in them as gifts..... hopefully they will continue to grow and I have created cost effective but lovingly cared for gifts.
Growing basil from seeds in the greenhouse....hopefully they will flourish
 Discover:  I discovered that not all 3 year olds are the same of my Gboy dressed in his Optimus Prime outfit and my nieces daughter Olivia dressed in his Bumblebee transformer outfit...only 7 months difference in their's really the long and the short of it I think.

Pictures really are priceless.... my Gboy is tall but Olivia is also petite.
I also discovered that... yes two of my baby chicks were roosters.....hardly babies anymore they are nearly 13 weeks old....unfortunately I will have to give them away as I don't want to keep roosters...

These two teenagers will be moving out very soon.
 Enhance:  The book for bookclub this month was A World of Other's actually a bit difficult to read as there is not much punctuation in the book and you need to reread it every now and then so that you can follow what's going on.....bookclub should be interesting as always. 

 Enjoy:  It's summer so there is so much to enjoy...we've been to a lovely wedding...a good friends 60th birthday dinner....moved my mother-in-law into her long awaited retirement village unit...and I spent a lovely couple of hours at the local lake with my daughter and Gboy... far more enjoyable to just watch them on the paddle boat... thankfully I wasn't out there paddling !!
My daughter and Gboy are out on one of those paddle boats