Saturday, September 15, 2012

Spring ...

has sprung and it has been a hive of industry around here. About time some might say. In the past few weeks I have planted rocket and zucchini, gotten rid of an old bar fridge that was taking up room in the kitchen, replaced it with a stainless steel bench that looks fab, killed a redback in the back yard, and generally de-cluttered and tidied.

But the thing I am most excited about is my newly thought up method of covering up an extremely ugly light fitting. We have 4 of these in our house and they have been bothering me for years. It is a rental so there isn't much we can do about them and I have been thinking long and hard about what I could do to cover them up. I had considered making some kind of drum shade to cover them up but that all seemed like a lot of work, requiring equipment I didn't have and I thought that perhaps it might be too heavy. The ceiling in the dining room was water damaged a few years ago and I am not confident that it would hold up anything too heavy. Anyway, last night I hit on the idea of fabric, attached with a bulldog clip, to hold up the light fittings. And today, whilst charity shopping with the family in Riverwood I found a lovely little white cot sheet with broderie anglaise lace edging. Very sweet and only $3. I got it home and initially panicked that it was too small but then got up on the dining room table and bunched it up over the light fititng and attached with bulldog clip. Ever so simple and effective. I just had to tweak the fabric here and there and push the bulldog clip down so you couldn't see it from below and 5 minutes later, it was done. Here are some pics:

This is an example of the light fitting, from the lounge room:

Truly hideous, wouldn't you agree?

And the end result:

Now I just need to find appropriate fabric for the other three lightfittings. An excuse to do some more charity shopping I guess, or perhaps a visit to Spotlight is in order. In the meantime I have Chet's 4th birthday party to plan, some sewing to get to and some counselling study to finish. I am hoping that spring is going to be much more productive than winter was ...

Monday, March 12, 2012

Vegan banana cake

Towards the end of last year I was diagnosed with a range of food intolerances. Some, like a wheat intolerance, I already knew I had but others were quite a surprise. Kidney beans, egg white, almonds and corn also showed up as well as cow's milk, cashews, pear and melon. This has been quite difficult, especially as I often used to use almond meal in place of flour, not to mention eating polenta practically on a weekly basis. So I have been working on my diet and also trying to change the way I bake in order to fit in with my new food regime.

One thing I often made was Stephanie Alexander's simple banana cake. Very easy and very yummy but containing things like eggs, flour and butter. The other day I had some very soft bananas and thought I would give the recipe a go, but swapping the ingredients I couldn't have for those I could. Besides, I need to start doing something with the 5 kg of spelt flour I bought recently. Here is my interpretation of Stephanie's recipe.

100 g coconut oil (approx)
1 and a half cups of sugar
Natural egg replacer to the equivalent of 2 eggs
1 cup ripe mashed banana - I used 5 bananas
Few drops of pure vanilla
250 g spelt flour
1 teaspoon bicarb
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon allspice
1/2 cup goats milk mixed with 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Putting it together:
Line base of a loaf tin with baking paper.
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
Mix oil and sugar with barmix until light and fluffy.
Beat in egg replacer, banana and vanilla.
Add dry ingredients and goats milk and lemon juice.
Spoon into tin and bake for 1 hour.


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Needed and wanted

We are working on the difference between needs and wants right now. An important life lesson for sure, and one I don't always have a handle on. Yesterday Chet was building a garage out of a Wiggles domino set and some duplo and was looking for a space to put one his cars. He turned to me and asked: "is it needed or wanted?" Excellent question I thought, and explained that it was wanted - cars don't 'need' garages but it would be nice sometimes for them to have them. I then went on to say that he needs food and water and air and sleep and cuggles and he grinned at me and said 'yes, and kisses too'. I think he has got the idea mostly, although not sure the conversation will stop the daily plaintive demand that he 'needs ice-cream'!

Friday, February 3, 2012


Been playing around with Wordle tongiht using this blog's URL. This is what I get:

Wordle: leaps

It's kinda fun - combining geekiness and words, what's not to like? A new header for the blog might be in order.

On a side note, a lot has been happening since I last posted - Chet is now toilet trained, I got a new computer (Macbook Air, fantastic, just need to work out how to do a few things), we went on holiday, it was my first Christmas since my Dad died and Minx went missing - we did find her after 5 days, thankfully. Summer has been pretty dire so hardly any beach time but we did manage many trips to charity shops over the Christmas break. The K-man decided to start buying 70s plates (and believe me, we do not need any more places, 70s or otherwise). As quickly as I could get rid of stuff he was busily acquiring more. So much for de-cluttering, an endless process it seems. Now that the year has well and truly begun I should have a bit more time to spend here. We shall see!
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