Monday, 31 December 2012

Photo a Day Wrap Up

It's New Years Eve, so today is the last day of Photo a Day December. I've decided not to continue on with photo a day next year, as much as I liked taking photos I just found it took to much to always keep the blog updated and I didn't really like doing the one post a week, plus I've completed 3 months and would like to give other avenues ago.

So here are my final photos for photo a day:

Day 24: Tradition/Something you always do (eat Ferrero Roscher chocolates while watch the Melbourne Carols on Channel Nine - I only ate 2 of them)


Day 25: Lunchtime (Our back door decided to let the Christmas showers in)


Day 26: Mess (I actually forgot to take a photo today so this is the mess from the 27th)


Day 27: How you relax (We didn't relax we had another Christmas party)


Day 28: Cold (the stare I gave Mischa when she hid the back of the cupboard just out of my reach)


Day 29: Hot (Rainbow Lorikeet taking a bath to cool down from the heat)


Day 30: Something that made you smile this year (I didn't take this photo today, it was a few weeks back, but my husband and nephew always make me smile)


Day 31: Self-portrait (wearing my 50c op shop silk dress while pretending to host a NYE party)


So I hope you all have a happy new year, and keep safe and enjoy life and I hope you join me here for some more fabulous adventures and fun.

Saturday, 29 December 2012

Christmas Cooking

As promised here is my Christmas cooking review.

I tried this year to set smaller goals than last year (so I wouldn't have so much left over) and I wouldn't break the bank or get too stressed out. Well that did work for the most part but I did still have a little bit left over - oh well.

More cupcakes were baked. This time dairy free chocolate cupcakes so my little niece could eat them. I made the whole batch dairy free and no one could tell (yeah!!!) Decorated with dairy free buttercream coloured green, tiny little edible tree confetti and to top it off a fondant star with everyone's name written on them for placemats. 


 

It's a tradition every year since MJ's and I's first Christmas together back in 2003 to bake/decorate this cookie tree. Well most of the time I end up baking and decorating the cookie tree but MJ ends up eating most of it so it works out fair in the end. I always like going for a rustic looking tree plus it's easier to decorate that way. The kit is a Wilton cookie tree set and is pretty easy to follow except the instructions say you should make 2 batches of the cookie recipe but after 3 years of doing 2 batches it made way too many cookies and 1 batch is more than enough. It's always a hit and MJ looks forward to eating the last big cookie star that is left at the bottom.





I also got my traditional Christmas Nigella recipe in too - Sweet & Salty Crunch Nut Bars, so I'm counting this towards my 150 so that 3 down now.

Oh my gosh these are the best chocolate bars ever - when you look at what goes in it, you'd think it wouldn't work out but wow it sure does. I did buy enough supplies to make 2 batches but we were all so full on Sunday night after dinner it didn't get touched so transferred over to Christmas Day. I might just have to make another batch just for myself and MJ.

My Review:

Title: Sweet & Salty Crunch Nut Bars
Book/Page #: Nigella Kitchen #310
Date cooked: 22/12/12
Review out of 5: 5 +
Eat again: Always
Notes: Just the best treat for Christmas







I did get a chance for Christmas Day to make some chocolate Rudolph Cupcakes I'd learnt to make in cupcake class.

They were a hit and with a few left over carried over for the 27th family insanity.




With all that cooking - I was a mess.






Friday, 28 December 2012

Christmas Roundup

Well I have certainty fulfilled item 46 on my 101 list - 'Host Christmas at our place'. I did so 3 times. My family on the 23rd, MJ's family on the 25th and my extended family on the 27th. So that item is well and truly ticked off the list.

Christmas was fun. I did get more Christmassy this year then I have in the past so that was a bonus. It was nice having everyone around and catching up and of course getting presents, but I love giving presents the most and seeing the looks on peoples faces when they rip the wrapping off to reveal the goodies inside.

Christmas Day was a wet one, with the heavens opening up outside, and in our case also inside. We had a little bit of a leak, thankfully was fixed up ok and we'll have to let the real estate know when they re-open in the new year.

I was very good and was careful what I ate and didn't over eat, but that still didn't stop me getting an upset tummy for the pass few days - maybe I've just overdone it with all the hosting and my body can't take no more.

Now that Christmas is all over for another year, things can settle down again and routine can ensure. 

Here are a few snap shots to sum up the mayhem and mischief that has occurred over the past week. I'll sum up my Christmas cooking adventures in tomorrows post.








Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Creative: A Month of: Zzzzzzzzz

Boxing Day - A day of rest.

We did venture out to go see The Hobbit. Awesome movie, I very much recommended it.

Now we are just lazying around the house checking out our presents with the Boxing Day Cricket Test Match in the background and the sounds of next door enjoying some drinking games.

How was your Boxing Day?

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Creative: A Month of: Y is for Yahoo

Y is for Yahoo!!!

Yeah MJ said this was one of his favourite presents - I tracked this down from the UK. He loved the show as a kid and he didn't realise it was on DVD. Very happy indeed!

Monday, 24 December 2012

Creative: A Month of: XXIV

XXIV = 24th December 2012 - Merry Christmas Eve Everyone!!!!

Photo a Day Catch Up

Photo a day weekly catch up:

Day 18 - Makes you feel merry - Toys always make me feel merry. My dad got me this.



Day 19 - Something beginning with 'S' - My Secret Santa present, a scrapbook kit.


Day 20 - Weather - Very warm and sunny



Day 21 - Tree - The Christmas tree at the local workers club where I had my birthday lunch



Day 22 - Decoration - One of my favourite decorations I bought in Prague



Day 23 - Joy is.... Joy is eating your first every chocolate cake (dairy free of course). This is my little niece enjoying her first ever chocolate cake at my family Christmas dinner last night. She had her first ever cake at my birthday too. She got that messy with it her daddy had to give her a bath straight away.



Creative: A Month of: W is for Work

Every time Christmas rolls around there is always work to be done. MJ has been tackling the house and garden work and I've been getting stuck into the cooking and decorating work.

I love cooking but there is always more to be done at Christmas time, but when it all comes together at the end it's just wow and wonderful (see more Ws).

Here is the Christmas table from my family Christmas last night. I'm very impressed by it.


Saturday, 22 December 2012

Creative: A Month of: V = Very Merry Christmas

V is for Very Merry Christmas!!!

It's feeling like Christmas now - The Carols in Domain are on TV!

Creative: A Month of: U is for Unique (My 28th)

U is for Unique - I'm always told I'm very unique!

Yesterday was my 28th birthday. I had a fun day.Very blessed.

It's a tradition with my mum to go out to morning tea together. We went to the local cafe and I got the most yummiest chocolate mousse cake and an orange juice. Mum had an ice coffee with a chocolate eclair. Afterwards we went to the Christmas light shop and ran a few errands of mum's.

So trying to work out how to make this


Some early presents
MJ and I went out to lunch at the local workers club and tried out their new noodle bar there. So yummy!!!


The afternoon was spent getting dinner ready for my family coming over. It was so much fun having everyone over for dinner at our new place.

My birthday cake

It was a wonderful day, so if it had of been true it was the end of the world it would have been a great day to go out on.

Presents from MJ

Presents from Family

I even got to cook another Nigella recipe so that's 2 out of 150 now.

Review:

Title: African Drumsticks
Book/Page # - Nigella Kitchen Page 46
Date Cooked: 21/12/12
Review out of 5 - 4
Eat again -Yes
Notes - Everyone liked it 



Books version

My version

Creative: A Month of: T is for Table Decoration

Yes I'm 2 days late in putting this one up, this was Thursday's post but by the time I remembered after such a busy day it was 11:30pm and the photo was on the camera and I wasn't getting out of bed.

So here we are:

T is for Table Decoration:

Friday was my birthday so on Thursday I was out at the flower markets getting some pretty gerberas and baby's breath to decorate the table with. I'm very impressed with the outcome and was feeling very bright and cheerful all ready for the next day of birthday madness.


Also on Thursday I baked and decorated my birthday cupcakes which turned out stunning (see next blog post) and got all the Christmas food shopping done and dusted, so hopefully no going to the shops for me before January next year!!!! We hope - fingers crossed.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Creative: A Month of: S is Secret Santa

Today I got my Secret Santa present at work - a scrap booking album and scrap booking kit. Whoever had me knows me well! How thoughtful of them.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Creative: A month of: R is for Retro

I love Retro and Vintage things.

I love the colours, the styles, the toys, the fabric, just a time where it all seemed easier.

Well today I thought I'd share a few links to some of my favourite Retro/Vintage websites. Enjoy

Hello Polly - https://hellopolly.com.au/

Pitt Trading - http://pitttrading.com.au/

Retro Vintage Fabrics - http://www.vintagefabrics.com.au/

Vintage Fabrics - http://www.vintagefabriconline.com/

Vintage Junkyard - http://www.facebook.com/VintageJunkyard

Wrapped in Fabric - http://www.wrappedinfabricaustralia.com/

Pretty in Pink - http://www.prettyinpink.com.au/

Meet me at Mikes - http://meetmeatmikes.blogspot.com.au/




Monday, 17 December 2012

Weekend Roundup

Another weekend over and Christmas is only just around the corner. Sunday this week coming up is our first Christmas event - my family Christmas dinner. All the last minute things to start preparing.

This weekend was lovely. Cardmaking on Thursday, Macarons on Friday and the Orchestra on Saturday night.

I also did get to meet my cute new niece that was born in October 'Milly'. She was just precious. She's so cuddly and just plain sweet.


Saturday night after the Orchestra we saw the beautiful Christmas tree at Martin Place.

Photo a day:

Day 11 - Sweet (practice cupcakes)



Day 12 - Hat (I love this Christmas hat)


Day 13 - Lights


Day 14 - Something green (the base of my nephew's present)


Day 15 - Outdoors (Iris in my garden)


Day 16 - Something you made (A mud puddle for my nephew's present - which took me an 1 hour 20 mins because my machine only likes to use expensive thread - lesson learnt)


Day 17 - On the floor (my Thomas the Tank Engine train set around the bottom of the Christmas Tree)







So another week starts and yeah only two days left of work and then it's my birthday on Friday which I'm excited about. Plus while I waiting for the photos to load on this post I've booked our movie tickets to go and see The Hobbit on Boxing Day. Yeah!!!! Exciting!!!!! Still can't believe for such a tiny book there is going to be 3 movies for it, when Lord of the Rings was such a huge book and 3 movies. Oh well.

Hope you all have a nice week - what are you up to? Let me know!!!!
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