30 October 2008

Today I saw Bigfoot

I saw Bigfoot today... he (or should I say she) was in the shoe store I was visiting... in the mirror.

It's jandal season, and I really love jandals! I don't know whether it's my beach upbringing, or the fact that I am a bit of a casual/lazy dresser... but I really love them. The shoe store I went into had just about a whole wall dedicated to jandals... and boy did my heart leap with joy! But on a closer inspection I found myself a little disappointed. All the cool jandals only went up to size 10!

My heart goes out to all you feet-challenged people... you are not alone.

29 October 2008

Wow - I actually won a competition!

I had a little package arrive in the mail yesterday... I had actually won a competition! I am one of those people who never seems to win competitions for some reason. My eldest son (Master 9) seems to be totally different... he has won about 11 colouring-in competitions in the past 6 years!

So anyway... thanks so much to Becca for my amazing "Revolution" CD/DVD put out by Equippers Church. I am loving it!

I have been watching the DVD... just need to get Mandrake to fix the CD player in the car so we can listen to it while driving.

Checkout some of their sounds here.

28 October 2008

Softie bunnies galore

More softies are waiting to be adopted in the Paisley Jade Softie Shop. They're going fast!

Who's your favourite? I like Burton!

27 October 2008


We got a bit of a surprise the other day when checking the eggs. One of our chickens had been quite busy and had laid a rather large egg.

It had a double yolk inside... which I used to make a really nice chocolate slice!

25 October 2008

Reluctant Model

Don't you hate having your photo taken... I persisted despite the initial complaints, and I am glad I did...

Meet Willis & Roger

Meet Willis and Roger... made with love to order. More Ugly Bunnies coming soon at the Paisley Jade Softie Shop.

22 October 2008

Things I'm loving at the moment

I'm loving seeing my two boys ('computer nerd' and 'book worm boy') enjoying playing outside. Bring on summer... although the muddy feet and skin rashes from plants and trees I could do without. See if you can spot the boys?

I am loving sewing my Ugly Bunnies. I have hardly had a moment to sit and sew lately, but when I do, I thoroughly enjoy it. I never knew I would find sewing a relaxing hobby - but it's amazing what happens when you have kids and get older! Ahhhhhhhhhhhh!

Although I hate to admit it (after all my grizzles to Symon), I am enjoying our 4 lovely chickens that roam about the property... and the 3 fresh eggs the girls love to collect each day!

I am loving the random visits from friends and family!

I am loving seeing our little vege patch start to grow. I do hope it can survive the children, chickens and slugs & snails. The miracle of plants in themselves is amazing... another great opportunity to share with the children about our God's creativity and cleverness!

21 October 2008

Magic Slice

Now this is definatley one of my favourites at the moment... the combination of coconut, chocolate, almonds and raisins is soooo yum!

1½ cups sweet biscuit crumbs
75g butter (melted)
1 cup Nestle Dark Choc Bits
1 cup raisins (or dried apricots)
1 cup desiccated coconut
1 cup sliced almonds
1 can Nestle Highlander Sweetened Condensed Milk
27cm x 18cm x 3cm tin

Preheat the oven to 180°C
Line the base of the tin with baking paper or use a non-stick tin
Put biscuit crumbs in a bowl
Stir in the melted butter & mix thoroughly
Press evenly over the base of the tin with the back of a spoon
Sprinkle the Nestle Dark Choc Bits over the biscuit-cumb base
Cover with the raisins, then the coconut and almonds
Pour the condensed milk evenly over the top
Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the centre is firm when pressed lightly.
Stand the tin on a rack until cold
Cut into squared or bars

Enjoy... and share!

For more delicious recipes visit here.

19 October 2008

Incredible Hulk Cake

Today Master 6 turned into Master 7! What an awesome little guy - Happy Birthday!!

Due to having 4 children, we have decided to have parties (with friends from school etc) every second year - this year was the boys 'no party' year, but we still had an awesome day with family, eating pizza (Master 7's favourite) and cake etc.

We have adopted a family tradition of everyone piling into our bed in the morning (on birthday mornings), each person sharing something special they like about the birthday person, and then all praying for that person. Very special to hear the things each child mentions and even prays. After that, the presents come out, paper goes everywhere and we wish we had a king size bed!

Symon has been planning a cake for Master 7 for the last few months, and after church we went to work in the kitchen making his "Incredible Hulk Cake".

Very cool - well done Syms! Checkout his "Indiana Jones Cake" as well if you want.

As you can see in the photo, Miss 1 thought the cake was very yummy... although most of it went in her hair.

Yay for birthdays... yay for cake... yay for life!

16 October 2008

Make a difference...

I have been inspired by a little girl called Olivia and her passion to raise funds to buy a cow for a needy family overseas.  I have donated Ernie to go towards the fundraising, so maybe you would like to bid on him too - he would make a great Christmas present for child or adult. (more details here).

Isn't is awesome when children get a heart for the downcast and social justice - which of course is so close to God's heart.

14 October 2008

I live in a zoo!

I like animals... I don't mind visiting the odd pet shop now and then, or going on a trip to the Zoo every other year... but I don't like animals as much as my husband. I'm beginning to feel like we are living in a zoo - and we actually live in the city!

I find life with 4 children quite full-on. Just keeping on top of the meals and laundry takes up a lot of time, not to mention actually 'parenting' each one. So I have always felt that there isn't that much time left over to spend on caring for animals. I don't mind our cat (Barney), as cats are pretty low maintenance... all they need is food and water and a pat now and then - but other than that, I just don't have the time or energy.

Why then do I feel like I am constantly living in a zoo? We currently have one big fat cat, 4 chickens (have just said goodbye to the two roosters), 12+ giant eels that are regularly fed in our creek, 3 mice in a breeding tank IN OUR BEDROOM... not to mentions the 3 containers of pet snails that I got rid of last week (I stood on one in our kitchen last night!).

Symon was even looking at an ant farm on tradme the other night, and is planning on buying the girls rabbits for Christmas this year! That's not to mention the many big black spiders that get brought into the house to help Symon 'overcome' his fear of spiders.

In the past 12 years of marriage we have had pet rats that had baby rats, tropical fish, goldfish, guinea pigs, kittens... nearly owned a ferret and a few ducks and who knows what else!


Any tips out there in blogland?

12 October 2008

Men in the kitchen... I like it!

It was time for another family Fun Themed Meal, and Master 6 chose "Da Boyz in Da House" card - which I thought was a wonderful idea!

So while the girls all reclined in the lounge and watched "Sing a Song of Wiggles" DVD (obviously one of my favourites), the boys were busy in the kitchen.

They did such an amazing job - yummy Nacho's (minus the mince!) and finished off with icecream covered in sprinkles. Syms even did the dishes - now that's what I call a fun themed meal!

See here for more of our fun themed meals!!

11 October 2008

Softies & Skirts

While Miss 1 had an extra long nap today (due to screaming all night!), and the other 3 children were occupied playing together, I was a bit sneaky and instead of vacumming the house, cleaning the bathroom and doing the groceries... I made two more Lazy Day Skirts in the yummy cupcake material and another Ugly Bunny named "Fifi".

The skirts are tucked away for the girls for Christmas, and Fifi is awaiting adoption in the PaisleyJade Softie Shop.

It's nice to spoil yourself with a break sometimes.

10 October 2008

Flashback Friday

I love this photo taken years ago of me and Master 6 (he was about 2 at the time).

I think it is more about the memories than the photo itself... hot chippies at the beach and a walk to view Ngunguru sandspit, little clumsy feet and his finger pointing at every little object to be seen.

The simple outings are often the most precious. Must do it again sometime!

09 October 2008

Apple & Date Muffins

These would have to be my favourite muffins at the moment... easy to make and very yummy indeed! Comes from my trusty muffin book called "the muffin book". I love dates and the crunchy topping on these muffins is yum!

1 large green apple, peeled, cored, and finely chopped
1 cup (6oz/185g) chopped, pitted dates (fresh or dried)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup (250ml) boiling water
½ cup (4 oz/125g) butter
¾ cup (6 oz/185g) granulated sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 cups (10oz/315g) self-rising flour, sifted


¼ cup (2oz/60g) butter
½ cup (3 ½ oz/100g) firmly packed brown sugar
½ cup (1 oz/30g) shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 190degC (375degF/Gas Mark 4). Grease muffin tin or line with paper cases.

For muffins, combine the apples, dates, baking soda, and boiling water. Allow to cool.

Using an electric mixer on medium to high speed, cream the butter and sugar until pale. Beat in the egg. Fold in the sifted flour alternately with the apple and date mixture. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.

Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly in pans while you make the topping.

For topping, place butter, brown sugar, and coconut in a small saucepan and stir over moderate heat until the butter melts and the ingredients are combined.

Spoon topping over muffins and return them to the oven. Bake until topping is bubbling and golden and a wooden skewer or toothpick inserted into the center of the muffin comes out clean, 5-8 minutes more. Serve warm, or transfer to a wire rack to cool.

For more delicious recipes visit here.

08 October 2008

Yay for Spotlight!

The people at Spotlight are very clever people. They have organised activities for children during the holidays, so that while their parents shop, the children are kept busy. Smart thinking I'd say.

They have been doing things like painting piggy banks, making Christmas cards and decorations, and today, decorating calico bears.

So I decided to take along my three oldest, and they had a great time decorating their bears... and I had a great time browsing the fabric isles. I ended up buying some fabric too - which is all part of Spotlight's clever plan I think!!

I love the grey floral fabric - quite retro, and I think will make a great tote... and the cupcake fabrics will make lovely "Lazy Day Skirts".

Might have to pop along to Spotlight again tomorrow and see what they have planned for the kids...

07 October 2008

Lucky's Big Day

I just had to do a link to my husband's recent post "Lucky's Big Day". Without giving much away, it was a real experience for me - especially preparing the item in the bottom photo.

Happy Family

I had a little package arrive in the mail yesterday... it was a special little guy who was longing to see his family (created as a result of a good idea - see here). Thanks Anya!

It was nice to have the happy family together and very cool to see Anya's creation up close. I love all the different aspects of the softie babies that come from their parents.

Will have to do it again, and this time I will send over the baby to Anya!

06 October 2008

Ugly Bunnies

Taadaa - two little Ugly Bunnies have been added to the shop and are waiting to be adpoted. Totally love these guys - Ernie and Bert.

Have always wanted to use buttons more with softies, so watch out for more Ugly Bunnies coming soon... although I think they are actually quite cute!

Which one is your favourite?

05 October 2008

Getting dirty

The plot has been plowed (thanks to my dad) ready for our vegetable garden for summer. We are a tad late this year - but better late than never.

Two of the kids loved spending the time 'helping' Poppa, especially finding worms from the freshly turned earth to feed to the hungry baby chickens.

Hopefully by next week we will have lettuce plants, tomato plants, herbs, potatoes and a few other things planted... then the hard work begins... maintaining the vege garden... and keeping the chickens, snails, slugs and kids out.

04 October 2008

10 year celebrations

Last night was an awesome night! We celebrated 10 years of youth church at CRF.

We looked back at old photo's on a slideshow, played some of the old songs, but also looked forward to what's ahead, and our lives now.

There have been so many special people involved in this youth ministry over the years - you know who you all are... thank you so much, we really appreciate you all.

It is great to see the lives that have been changed and impacted - especially ours! God is amazing.

Here are a few pics from last night...

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